Epiphany: A Light Has Shone to the Whole World!

The Osservatore Romano, the newspaper of the Holy See had a short article today on the Epiphany. Worth your time to read. I am presenting the original Italian text, with my English translation below it.

Happy Epiphany, everyone!!

Oggi è apparsa la luce inaccessibile

 

di Manuel Nin


La festa dell’Epifania in tutte le tradizioni orientali è incentrata su due punti fondamentali. Il primo è la dimensione battesimale con la santificazione delle acque del Giordano per la discesa in esse di Cristo e delle acque battesimali per la venuta dello Spirito Santo invocato su di esse nel giorno dell’Epifania e ogni volta che si amministra il battesimo. Il secondo punto è l’incarnazione del Verbo di Dio, manifestatasi nella venuta di Cristo come vero uomo.
Il battesimo di Cristo e come conseguenza il battesimo dei cristiani è dono di illuminazione per coloro che lo ricevono. La presenza del salmo 26 all’ora di prima dell’ufficiatura della vigilia (“il Signore è mia illuminazione e mio salvatore”) e diversi tropari della festa sottolineano appunto il battesimo come nuova creazione, dono di luce e di vita nuova: “Si è manifestato oggi il salvatore, la grazia, la verità, tra i flutti del Giordano, e ha illuminato quanti dormivano nelle tenebre e nell’ombra: perché è venuta, è apparsa la luce inaccessibile”.

 
Today has appeared an unapproachable light
by Manuel Nin
 
The feast of the Epiphany in all the eastern traditions is centered on two fundamental points. The first is the baptismal dimension with the sanctification of the waters of the Jordan by means of Christ entering into them. The Holy Spirit was invoked upon these waters the water on the day of the Epiphany and every time baptism is administered.  The second point is the incarnation of the Word of God, manifested in the coming of Christ as a true man.
 

The baptism of Christ and consequently the baptism of Christians is a gift of illumination for those who receive it. The presence of Psalm 26 at the first hour of the vigil (“The Lord is my light and my savior.”) and diverse other strophes of the Feast perfectly underscore that baptism as a new creation, a gift of new light and life: “Today the Savior manifests himself, the grace and the truth in the waves of the Jordan, and has illuminated all those who sleep in the darkness and the shadows. He has come, and has appeared as an unapproachable light.”

It is worth our meditation, i.e., the whole theology that Christmas, Epiphany and the upcoming feast of the Baptism of the Lord are all interconnected, all having to do with light, life, and grace, all tied into baptism the sacrament of redemption. Jesus Christ is the sacrament of redemption, and that is why baptism for us is so important, for it brings us into the life, death and resurrection of Jesus; it conforms us into Jesus Christ. Christmas, Epiphany and the Baptism of the Lord are all revelatory of who Jesus is, and who we are to become. Each one of these feasts are “epiphanies”, i.e., manifestations of the God, Emmanuel.

Truly, unapproachable light, a mysterious revelation of God, and the wedding of man with God for all eternity!

To read the article, log on to: www.vatican.va/news_services/or/or_quo/text.htmll#3

About Deacon Bob

Moderator: Deacon Bob Yerhot of the Diocese of Winona, Minnesota.
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