Sunday, January 7, 2024, Epiphany of the Lord

Episode 14 January 05, 2024 00:04:08
Sunday, January 7, 2024, Epiphany of the Lord
Sundays with Bishop Ken
Sunday, January 7, 2024, Epiphany of the Lord

Jan 05 2024 | 00:04:08

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Little Books of the Diocese of Saginaw

Show Notes

Today, Bishop Ken guides us through the end of the Christmas season.

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Episode Transcript

What happened to the frankincense, gold and myrrh which the magi gave to the Infant Jesus? One theory is that Mary saved the gifts and then gave them to the Church in Jerusalem, where they remained until 400 A.D. The items were then sent to Constantinople and placed in the Hagia Sophia Church. When Constantinople fell to the Ottomans in 1453, Maro (the Christian widow of the Turkish sultan) gave the gifts to the Monastery of St. Paul on Mount Athos in northern Greece. Tradition says that Maro wanted to bring the gifts into the monastery herself, but was stopped by a heavenly voice reminding her that women were forbidden to enter the monastery. The magi’s gifts are said to still be at the monastery. In the early centuries, the birth of Christ didn’t have its own feast. It was originally part of a great feast on January 6 called “Epiphany” that celebrated several “manifestations” of Christ – his birth, his recognition by the Magi, his baptism in the Jordan, and his miracle at Cana. In about the fourth century, Christians in the western world pulled Christmas out of the Epiphany celebration and gave it a feast of its own on December 25. The time between this new feast on December 25, and the feast of the Epiphany on January 6 became the Christmas season – the “12 days of Christmas.” But the Christmas season no longer ends on January 6. That’s because eventually an “octave” was added to the feast of the Epiphany – an extension of the celebration for a week after the feast. When this happened, the Christmas season no longer ended on Epiphany but continued through the octave. The feast of the Baptism of the Lord was eventually placed at the end of the octave . . . and now it is the feast that brings the Christmas season to a close.

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