January 6 is the Feast of the Epiphany or the Twelfth Day of Christmas. The word “epiphany” means “reveal”. On this day we celebrate when Jesus was revealed to the world as God. In the Roman Catholic Church in the United States we recognize the Feast of the Epiphany as the day of the visitation of the Three Wise Men from the East, the day Jesus was revealed to these leaders of the Gentile nations. Other cultures and faith traditions also celebrate the Baptism of the Lord, the Miracle at the Wedding Feast in Canna, and Nativity of the Lord on this date.
Some people prefer to do their holiday gift-giving at Epiphany, as the Magi gave gifts to Jesus. This is also the day that many Wise Men figurines are finally included in Nativity scenes. Our family doesn’t have any Epiphany traditions to speak of, other than attending Mass. Sometimes we will have a big meal or a special dessert, but it doesn’t take much to encourage us to celebrate with food! This year, however, I would like to do something more. Perhaps we can share some gifts with the local crisis pregnancy center. Maybe our family can share the love of Jesus by helping another baby born in less-than ideal circumstances.