(Photo credit: Anne Bender- As children in our family we really celebrated the Epiphany well)
"If you wish to be brothers, let the weapons fall from your hands. One cannot love with offensive weapons in his hands." - Blessed Pope Paul VI
This past weekend was the Feast of the Epiphany where we celebrate the event of the three magi welcoming the young Christ child in the manger with gifts of frankincense, gold and myrrh. What always fascinated me about this scene was the fact that the Magi were from totally different countries and had an extremely different way of worship. Although they were complete strangers to the Holy Family, they still allowed themselves to witness the coming of a young ruler, offered him royal gifts and let Christ touch their hearts.
This is of particular interest today because, as I look at the world, and as I look at the situation in Milwaukee where so many people are angry and confused, sad and hurting over the Dontre Hamilton Case, with disrespect towards law enforcement and higher authorities, rising abortion numbers, children without loving parents and guardians, and young men and women deciding to break the law instead of practicing honesty and integrity. There is so much violence and bigotry in our city, and the Feast of the Epiphany is a perfect reminder that we need to love a bit more, forgive a bit more and let everything that divides us go.
Individually, we all have a lot of worries and stresses that can weigh us down. In my own life I have a lot of worries that can begin to weigh me down with work, with the responsibilities of living on my own As we begin this new year, it is my prayer that we offer our hearts, no matter how blackened with sin or weighed down with worry to Christ, just as the Magi offered their gifts. Let the love and the mercy of Christ fill you with light and warmth this New Year.