Epiphany – the Revelation of Christ
Posted on 05. Jan, 2017, in Christian Values, Church Teachings, Festivals, Seasons of the Church Year1 Comment
When we think of the feast of the Epiphany, we usually think of the three wise men coming from the East. People often joke that they arrived late with totally impractical gifts for a new mother who was forced to give birth to her son in a manger. Abbot Brendan Coffey of Glenstal Abbey talked with Marie Stuart about the origins of the feast. He went on to talk about the manner in which the Feast of the Epiphany highlights the revelation of God to us in different ways. He also suggests that just as the Wise Men followed a light to lead them to the Light, we are invited to use all the the stars and all the lights we meet on our journey to guide us to the Light.
Thank you Marie and Brendan for this revealing interview. I have always been fascinated by the feast of the Epiphany and have been fed by a number of sources. Paul Durcan in a radio interview, I think with Pat Kenny, opened this feast with a beautifully outward gaze, saying that this is the real Christmas for us gentiles. More recently I have been reading Thomas Keating, where he situates the Epiphany two years after the birth of Christ. I put that together with the slaughter of the two-year-old boys of the area, realising this as a mark of the timing. Further to this, Thomas Keating writes of the Epiphany as a mystical feast. This is further elucidated by Brendan as he gives so clearly the Eastern origin of the feast and spells out the meaning of each of the gifts. I was most interested in the connections between this feast and that of the baptism and the wedding at Cana. It all shows that there are many layers of meaning to what could be taken so lightly as a familiar story.