In this year's readings the whole story of the Epiphany is told. Next week we read the story of the second manifestation of the Divinity of Jesus at his Baptism and the following Sunday - "Cana Sunday" we witness the third manifestation at the Marriage Feast in Cana. Today we hear about the first manifestation to the "Magi" or "kings" who were more likely astrologers.
They tell us a story of Jesus coming for all humankind, a story with richer and deeper implications today than at the time of the Gospels. Despite our tradition of Caspar, Beltassar, and Melchior, the Greeks and the Russians hold that there were twelve kings. Since there were twelve tribes of Israel and twelve apostles, they argue that there had to be twelve kings.
Our tradition of three is based on the fact that three gifts were mentioned. No matter how many of them there were, they were men who, as the carol says, had the courage to follow their star.
In Stores and
Once upon a time, there were three young women, best friends since their early school days. They were bright, imaginative and very creative young women who in the eyes of their peers seemed a "bit different." In their high school days, their peers considered this difference a sign of weirdness, and thus an excuse for excluding them from all the cool things that the "in crowd" did. Some wondered why they wanted to spend so much time studying or doing volunteer things or reading or, God forbid, going to the symphony instead of rock concerts.
At times, the three friends were hurt by the words and actions of their peers. But, being women who dreamed great dreams, they couldnt give up the things that challenged them to want something more, even when they werent sure what that more was. Imagine the surprise of their peers when at their ten year reunion, the three were the most successful members of their class, had traveled widely, had charming escorts and were up and coming stars in their careers.
Psalm 72:1-2, 7-8, 10-13
1 Give the king thy justice, O God, and thy
righteousness to the royal son!
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