Today, we are celebrating the manifestation of Christ, son of God to the peoples, first to Mary and Joseph, then the Shepherds and then to all people, through the Magi. The Magi were on a pilgrimage seeking the face of God who became man. They realized that their scientific expertise was not enough to understand their guide, the star in their search for the new king, the Messiah. So, they were humble and courageous enough to ask about the birth of the new king in Jerusalem, at the palace, scribes, and priests. Gospel says the king was frightened when heard about the birth of the new king of Jews, and all Jerusalem with him. We see the Magi placing their trust in the Sacred Scriptures, in particular, the prophecy of Micah, which says “the Messiah would be born at Bethlehem, the city of David”.

Then they followed the star which took them to Jesus, in whom God manifested in human form. They had an epiphanic experience in seeing mystery of God revealed to them and they knelt and worshipped the Son of God and the word incarnate. The star has historically been interpreted as a symbol for the light of faith, leading people to Christ and it also figures the “grace” of God.

For the Church, the journey of the Magi, guided by the star to the manger was the beginning of a great procession which winds throughout history. This morning we came her as part of that procession to see and experience God in person. The church is a pilgrim church who follows the light of Christ and brings Christ’s light shine in the world. The Church is holy but made up of men and women with their failures and limitations, but Christ will also forgive and renew us constantly. Through baptism, we have been commissioned to carry on the ministry of Jesus and called to be God’s authentic ambassadors as light of Christ to everybody with whom we interact daily. The example of the Magi should inspire and edify us to examine our own lives as disciples and identify ways to refocus our relationship with Jesus and persevere like the Magi. The Magi were not deterred by the lack of immediate results for their efforts. It is an important message for us because at times, we can become discouraged in our faith life if we do not sense immediate results to our prayer. Like the Magi, in our journey of faith, Scripture is important as Word of God reveals to us the reality of God and how he works in our lives.

Epiphany means the manifestation of Jesus. The grace of God guided the Magi, the scriptures enlightened them, and they found and worshipped the Son of God, Jesus. The invitation to Jerusalem we heard in the 1st reading from Isaiah may be applied to the Church now, “Arise, shine; for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you”.

When we celebrated Christmas last week, we were celebrating this manifestation, the light of the world who became man for your salvation and mine.

Question is, did we experience a revelation of God became one among us for our sake? Did we experience, a manifestation of the light of God in our heart, an experience of encounter with Christ instead of shopping, gifts and party? As followers of Christ, everything we do as a church needs to be about facilitating that encounter.

During this celebration, let us, ask God for graces to seek and experience Jesus, the savior, like the Magi who experienced God’s manifestation or revelation. When we begin a new year, let us make a commitment to strengthen our relationship with God through prayer, scripture, sacraments, and charity coming out of it.

Wish you all a blessed New Year.

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