Deacon Bob’s Homily for Epiphany

Here is my homily for the weekend. God bless all of you!


Isaiah 60:1-6; Eph 3: 2-3a; Mt 2: 1-12

January 6/7, 2024

The Epiphany is the revelation to the entire world that the Christ child is God of all nations. The Epiphany is the revelation that Jesus is Lord of every nation on earth, every person, and indeed, Lord of the universe. He came to save everyone, however similar to or different from ourselves, and to make all one in Him.

Jesus, who was first revealed on Christmas morning to a familiar people, the Jewish nation, is now revealed to the entire world with the coming of the Magi. Today, a great light shines, as the Gospel says, piercing the darkness of the whole world. There is not a single corner of our lives or our world that is not illuminated by the light of Christ!

How will Epiphany affect you? What impact will it have on your life? Finally, how does God want to make you an epiphany in today’s world? 

We have a beautiful manger scene set up in our church. Take a look. What do we see? Yes, we see the baby Jesus in a manger with Mary and Joseph, along with the shepherds, animals, and angels. We see approaching Jesus three wise men from foreign countries, bearing gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. These gifts are given to kings, priests, and those preparing a body for burial. Now, try to imagine you are that child lying in the manger. Or try imagining you are Joseph or Mary seeing strangers suddenly coming, strangers attracted by a beautiful light, a star that shines. How do you feel?

Meditate on this thought: What happened that day two thousand years ago with those Magi is meant to happen today through your life. How, you may ask? Imagine this: You must look like Jesus. You must look like him so much that people see him in you and come from afar, attracted to you. How comfortable are you thinking you are like Jesus?  Are you ready to become a light in our world?

I think what happened to these Wise Men can and should happen to the world today in some manner. I think God is telling us who are Christians that our spiritual job is to be so much like Jesus that we become an “epiphany”. No, we are not God; yet, we are made in his image. God took on our humanity, took on our nature, and looked like us, and so we can grow more and more in holiness, and look like him and live like him. People should see Jesus in us. So many people search for God, like those Magi did, so will they find Him in us? Are we shining like the star in this world’s darkness? Will we be an epiphany? Will we reveal God to others by how we live? Are we enough like Jesus that people are drawn to us, to our light? The first Christians did and they changed the world. Why don’t we?

Perhaps the great epiphany this year for us is realizing that we are to become an epiphany in our world today. We must reveal to the world who God is by how we live. We must be so like Jesus that people come to us.  Maybe the epiphany for us is that God wants us to be a light to the nations, to shine on all people, yes, even foreigners.

My friends, my point is this: everyday needs to be an epiphany. We are facing important problems today in the world and even in our Church that threaten to deface Jesus, disfigure his face. The Evil One wants to keep him hidden.  Will we have the courage to resemble Jesus enough to reveal him? Do we really believe what we say we believe? If we have been begotten of God, as St John says in his writings, then we have the very life of God within us and this life can and must shine from within us to the world. Satan very much wants to dim that light, that life in us.

Will we resemble Jesus, reveal him, so much so that yes, many will come from far and away to be with us in our parish and diocese and our country? Will they see Jesus in us?

The answer must be “Yes!” For our sakes, for the sake of the Church, for the sake of the world.

About Deacon Bob

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