The mystery of the Epiphany

January 17, 2019

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On Jan. 6, Catholics worldwide gathered for the Feast of the Epiphany. Commemorating the visit of the Magi—the Three Kings or Three Wise Men—to the newborn Jesus, the Epiphany celebrates the revelation of Jesus as the Son of God. 

At Mass that day, Tom Lucas, S.J., rector of the Jesuit Community at Seattle University (right), delved into the mystery of the Epiphany and the gifts of the Magi to reveal the healing balm of God’s mercy and love poured out for all—especially during times of trial, upheaval and sorrow. As he shared in his homily: 

“This moment in the life of our society, our church, and in the life of nations, is a time of Myrrh. ‘Sorrowing, sighing, bleeding, dying’ we sing in ‘We Three Kings.’ In the past months we have experienced that in the shame we as Catholics have been forced to face anew. There is so much that needs to die away: cultures of privilege and carelessness, of self-interest and self-protection. Those cultures need to be laid to rest. And there are wounds self-inflicted and inflicted by others, sorrows and wounds that still desperately need to be healed. We need this gift of myrrh, this medicine whose bitterness is also strangely sweet. We need to acknowledge and own and confront death and diminishment around us in our church, in our society, and apply the healing poultice of bittersweet repentance and forgiveness.” 

You can read the full text of Fr. Lucas’s homily at Institute for Catholic Thought and Culture.