The Weekend of January 4-5
by Adam Mumm
This Weekend at SJTW
Father Tom joins us for our celebration of the Epiphany of the Lord!
In the Readings
First Reading Isaiah 60:1-6
Arise, Jerusalem, and shine like the sun; The glory of the Lord is shining on you! Other nations will be covered by darkness, But on you the light of the Lord will shine; The brightness of his presence will be with you. Nations will be drawn to your light, And kings to the dawning of your new day.
Look around you and see what is happening: Your people are gathering to come home! Your sons will come from far away; Your daughters will be carried like children. You will see this and be filled with joy; You will tremble with excitement. The wealth of the nations will be brought to you; From across the sea their riches will come.
Great caravans of camels will come, from Midian and Ephah. They will come from Sheba, bringing gold and incense. People will tell the good news of what the Lord has done!
Second Reading Ephesians 3:2-3a, 5-6
Brothers and sisters: You have heard that God in his grace has given me this work to do for your good. God revealed his secret plan and made it known to me. In past times human beings were not told this secret, but God has revealed it now by the Spirit to his holy apostles and prophets. The secret is that by means of the gospel the Gentiles have a part with the Jews in God’s blessings; they are members of the same body and share in the promise that God made through Christ Jesus.
Gospel Matthew 2:1-13
Jesus was born in the town of Bethlehem in Judea, during the time when Herod was king. Soon afterward, some men who studied the stars came from the East to Jerusalem and asked, “Where is the baby born to be the king of the Jews? We saw his star when it came up in the east, and we have come to worship him.” When King Herod heard about this, he was very upset, and so was everyone else in Jerusalem. He called together all the chief priests and the teachers of the Law and asked them, “Where will the Messiah be born?” “In the town of Bethlehem in Judea,” they answered. “For this is what the prophet wrote: ‘Bethlehem in the land of Judah, you are by no means the least of the leading cities of Judah; for from you will come a leader who will guide my people Israel.’”
So Herod called the visitors from the East to a secret meeting and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared. Then he sent them to Bethlehem with these instructions: “Go and make a careful search for the child; and when you find him, let me know, so that I too may go and worship him.” And so they left, and on their way they saw the same star they had seen in the East. When they saw it, how happy they were, what joy was theirs! It went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. They went into the house, and when they saw the child with his mother Mary, they knelt down and worshiped him. They brought out their gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh, and presented them to him. Then they returned to their country by another road, since God had warned them in a dream not to go back to Herod.
There has been a long standing tradition in the Catholic Church to “Chalk the Door” of your home to mark Epiphany Sunday and welcome the new year! Perhaps this is not something you are familiar with, so you are invited to begin a new tradition in your home by picking up a piece of chalk and short prayer service at the entrances/exits of the church. The directions for the door chalking are included along with a short explanation of the whole ritual.
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