Saturday, January 05, 2008
Solemnity, Epiphany of the Lord
Solemnity, Epiphany of the Lord - A
Rise up in splendor, Jerusalem! Your light has come, the glory of the
Lord shines upon you. See, darkness covers the earth, and thick clouds
cover the peoples; but upon you the LORD shines, and over you appears
his glory. Nations shall walk by your light, and kings by your shining
radiance. Raise your eyes and look about; they all gather and come to
you: your sons come from afar, and your daughters in the arms of their
nurses. Then you shall be radiant at what you see, your heart shall
throb and overflow, for the riches of the sea shall be emptied out
before you, the wealth of nations shall be brought to you. Caravans of
camels shall fill you, dromedaries from Midian and Ephah; all from
Sheba shall come bearing gold and frankincense, and proclaiming the
praises of the LORD.
EPHESIANS 3:2-3A, 5-6
Brothers and sisters: You have heard of the stewardship of God's grace
that was given to me for your benefit, namely, that the mystery was
made known to me by revelation. It was not made known to people in
other generations as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and
prophets by the Spirit: that the Gentiles are coheirs, members of the
same body, and copartners in the promise in Christ Jesus through the
When Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea, in the days of King Herod,
behold, magi from the east arrived in Jerusalem, saying, "Where is the
newborn king of the Jews? We saw his star at its rising and have come
to do him homage." When King Herod heard this, he was greatly
troubled, and all Jerusalem with him. Assembling all the chief priests
and the scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ
was to be born. They said to him, "In Bethlehem of Judea, for thus it
has been written through the prophet: And you, Bethlehem, land of
Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; since from you
shall come a ruler, who is to shepherd my people Israel." Then Herod
called the magi secretly and ascertained from them the time of the
star's appearance. He sent them to Bethlehem and said, "Go and search
diligently for the child. When you have found him, bring me word, that
I too may go and do him homage." After their audience with the king
they set out. And behold, the star that they had seen at its rising
preceded them, until it came and stopped over the place where the
child was. They were overjoyed at seeing the star, and on entering the
house they saw the child with Mary his mother. They prostrated
themselves and did him homage. Then they opened their treasures and
offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. And having been
warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed for their
country by another way.
Since the new millennium, the world has be en described as a "global
village." Advances in communications and information technology have
truly made the earth a small place. No country can be considered too
remote, no island can be considered too secluded. The physical
barriers imposed by distance have broken down, and we now find
ourselves in a small world indeed. With these new global links come
wealth and knowledge. Billions of dollars in transactions are carried
out every day in the major markets of the world, linked electronically
with one another. Data on almost any topic can be obtained with ease,
with just the click of a computer mouse.
Unfortunately, bridging the information and communications divide has
not readily translated into a more peaceful existence for the world.
Ethnic strife continues to cause wars and civil disturbance in many
countries. Religious intolerance still flourishes, hand in hand with
militant fundamentalism. Racial prejudice still abounds in even more
malevolent forms. It is ironic indeed that at a time when nations and
peoples can communicate as they have never done before, hate and
misunderstanding continues to hold sway in the hear ts and minds of
Amidst these contradictions of the new millennium, perhaps the journey
of the magi can offer a valuable lesson. Sent by Herod to find a child
whom the king wanted ex terminated, these wise men traveled far and
wide. They were sent to fulfill a tyrant's mission. They arrived at
the manger and were moved to adore the Christ child. They left
Bethlehem transformed by the wonder they had just beheld, and went on
their way emissaries of the goodwill that had changed them.
Epiphany celebrates the manifestation of Christ to the Gentile
peoples, to the whole world. The magi represent us, we who have been
graced enough to be encompassed by God's loving plan of salvation. In
the arduous journey of the magi, we are invited to see as well the
journey of faith we are called to under take in accepting the gif t of
our faith. In the offerings of the wise men, we are called to see how
we too should give of ourselves in praising Jesus as our Lord and
Savior. And in the new path taken by the magi from Bethlehem, we
should see the directions we are called to change in our lives as we
allow Jesus' message to vivify us.
And in this journey, there can be no shortcuts. Quite contrary to the
"instant" and "automatic" mindset that the wonders of technology
inculcate in our consciousness, we are called to dedicate the rest of
our lives to appreciating the great gif t of Jesus, the great gif t of
our faith. This entails patience, generosity, tolerance,
understanding, love, and all those values against which the world of
today seems to militate.
But if we are to persevere, the reward is great. It is the great
realization that we are truly "members of the same body and sharers of
the promise through the preaching of the Gospel." Adoring Christ and
all that he represents, perhaps it is not hoping in vain that we, the
humanity housed in this "global village" of ours can still be truly
one world, one people.
With Jesus, we the people who have been groping in darkness have been
truly given a great light. In this great enterprise, it is Jesus
himself who shall be our beacon and guide, for as the prophet Isaiah
proclaims, "over us appears His glory." May we be able to manifest
that glory to others, and to the whole world.
We pray ...
... for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the
... for the strength, healing and speedy recovery of:
- Damaso Guevara and Eligia Fernando
- Herminia Guiden
... for the personal intentions of:
- O'Brien Family
- Mrs. Johnson, David, Theresa, Will and Anna
... Good health: Sheila Maxwell, Margarite and Evelyn Ponce de Leon
... In Thanksgiving for blessing received: Josheil Dapo
... for the eternal repose of the soul of Guillermo Samaniego, Sr.
Eternal rest grant unto him and may perpetual light shine upon him.
May he and all the dearly departed rest in peace.
... for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary.
- Birthday: Andrea Lim
- Birthday: Anthony C. Pineda
- Birthday: Letty C. Escamillan
- Birthday: Macario Te
- Birthday: Martina L. Suyosa
- Birthday: Philip S. Del Carmen
- Wedding Anniversary: Crispin & Evelyn Balingit
- In Memoriam(+): Emiliano Villegas (Jan 5, 1923-Jul 31, 1995)
... for world peace and reconciliation.
Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our
prayers and for those who need our prayers the most.
Have a good day!
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