Sunday, January 8, 2012


It's amazing to me that I could be Catholic for so long and not know what this feast means until now. That alone should keep me humble, knowing that I know so little it constitutes not knowing at all for all practical purposes:-).

The feast of the Epiphany is the next to last day of Christmas and celebrates when the Magi followed the star all the way to where the baby Jesus was with Mary. They brought gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh and did him homage. They recognized that this infant was God incarnate. For more information on this special day here is a good article on the celebration:

Because Epiphany is such a powerful word, I looked for definitions of what it means. Here is what I found. The first two are from Wikepedia. I have attached the link for those who want full context:

The word epiphany originally referred to insight through the divine.[6] Today, this concept is used much more often and without such connotations, but a popular implication remains that the epiphany is supernatural, as the discovery comes suddenly from the outside.

An epiphany (from the ancient Greek ἐπιφάνεια, epiphaneia, "manifestation, striking appearance") is the sudden realization or comprehension of the (larger) essence or meaning of something. The term is used in either a philosophical or literal sense to signify that the claimant has "found the last piece of the puzzle and now sees the whole picture," or has new information or experience, often insignificant by itself, that illuminates a deeper or numinous foundational frame of reference.

And one last from e·piph·a·ny

1. ( initial capital letter ) a Christian festival observed on January 6, commemorating the manifestation of Christ to the gentiles in the persons of the Magi; Twelfth-day.
2. an appearance or manifestation, especially of a deity.
3. a sudden, intuitive perception of or insight into the reality or essential meaning of something, usually initiated by some simple, homely, or commonplace occurrence or experience.
4. a literary work or section of a work presenting, usually symbolically, such a moment of revelation and insight.

1275-1325; Middle English epiphanie < Late Latin epiphanīaepipháneia, Greek: apparition, equivalent to epi- epi- + phan- (stem of phaínein to appear) + -eia -y3

Epiphany (holiday), a Christian holiday on January 6 celebrating the visit of the Magi to the infant Jesus Epiphany (feeling), a sudden realization of great truth.

For me, after reading these articles, I feel epiphanies are rare. In a sense we are always seeking and discovering new realities both collectively and individually, but rarely is that final piece revealed.

If our life is a puzzle then we are always collecting and putting a new piece in. We see more clearly what the picture is but more often than not we don't see the whole picture. That could range from a broad question like, "What is the purpose of my life?", to a very specific question like, "Why do certain people enter my life?" or "Who has God willed to be my mate?". We seek answers and get some confirmations. We can see some reasons, but rarely do we see the whole picture.

This first week of the new year for me, I have received lots of signs. The first is in what I have received unexpectedly in career options and deeper friendship connections. Later, some very powerful and unexpected feelings were revealed to me. Finally, prayers were answered and signs pointed me to someone, and doors closed away from others. The purpose, reason and outcome I do not know. What I do know is that God/Love has milestones in mind for me this year. He has prepared my heart.

As we journey in this life not knowing what the next moment will bring and not knowing when our efforts will pay off, let us trust in the divine voice that resides in us. Let's trust it to guide us through the light and dark moments. To trust that step by misstep, if we hold on to God and Love as much as we can in this life, we will eventually see the Epiphany.


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