“Tribus miráculis ornatum diem sanctum cólimus:
hódie stella Magos duxit ad præsépium:
hódie vinum ex aqua factum est ad núptias:
hódie in Iordáne a Ioánne Christus baptizári vóluit,
ut salváret nos, allelúia.”
“This day we keep a holiday in honour of three wonders:
this day a star led the wise men to the manger;
this day at the marriage, water was made wine;
this day was Christ pleased to be baptized of John in the Jordan,
for our salvation. Alleluia.”
— Magnificat Antiphon, last day of Epiphanytide
Three theophanies are traditionally celebrated together, for they are intimately linked: the worship of Jesus by the Magi stands for the revelation of the Son of God to the Gentiles; Jesus’ baptism in the Jordan stands for His revelation to the Jews; and the marriage feast at Cana stands for our Lord’s revelation to His Apostles.
The order is significant. The first happened at the beginning of Jesus’ life on earth, as the Gentiles having been converting to Christ from the beginning. The second happened toward the end of Jesus’ mortal life, as St Paul and the Prophet Malachi tell us the Jews will convert to Christ at the end. This is also foreshadowed in the final chapters of Genesis, when all the world has gone to Joseph, Saviour of the World, to beg for bread, for life, and then finally Joseph’s brothers come too, and recognise him whom they thought was dead, and great was their love! And the third, Jesus’ revelation to His chosen ones, His friends, in the context of marriage, tells us that the final vision of the Divine Glory will mean eternal union between Christ the Bridegroom and the Church His Bride.
Blessed Epiphanytide. May our new website be all for the glory of God and the salvation of souls.
13 January 2018, Commemoration of the Baptism of Our Lord