Wednesday, January 6, 2010

The Feast of Epiphany

Today we celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany in our home, even though it was celebrated at Mass on Sunday.

We have been celebrating the Twelve Days of Christmas each day and this comes to an end today. I have been hoping to share this with you and perhaps I will after we finish the Feast of Epiphany today.

We have a few traditions we have developed over the years I would like to share with you.

Last night everyone put out their shoes and we had a "visit" from the Three Kings. These are very simple gifts that we have tried to simulate the giving of Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh.

"The Fathers of the Church interpreted their gifts mystically as symbols of Christ's Kingship (gold), His Divinity (frankincense because it was used for worship in the temple) and His mortal Humanity (myrrh because it was used in the burial of the dead)." I don't remember where I got this quote from so I cant link to it, sorry.

For gold we have chocolate gold coins, frankincense we have herbal teas or special coffee to represent the aroma of incense in the temple, for myrrh we have cloves wrapped up in paper to represent the spices used in burial.
I also put in some Christmas cookies, well just because, I don't remember why I started doing this.
As for most special feast days I make a small laminated book mark and I put this is the shoes as well.
I usually just google the image and print it into small holy card size and then laminate it. So we have gathered quite a collection of these over the years
We will transform our Christmas Crib to a throne much like this. We usually make a gold cardboard crown for Jesus and a gold sceptre for him to hold and throw a purple, gold or red play cloth over the crib to make a throne.
We haven't used candles before but I love the idea and I think we will do this today.

We also make the Three Kings Cake with 3 beans inside for the lucky people to become the Kings for the day. The kings then dress up in costumes and crowns that have been made for them and process to the Throne and present the gifts to Jesus.
We have usually made these as well and I am hoping for to make a more lasting reusable three gifts today.

Some years we have also done a play such as our St George and Michaelmas Plays. I am planning one for today and once again this means dressing up and arriving on various 'camels and horses'. This is usually a highlight for the children as they love to dress up and act.

We have a few books we read today that we have saved from our Christmas reading ~
Hurrah for Three Kings Day
The Last Straw
The Fourth Wise Man
Emma's Christmas
The Twelve Days of Christmas

We have also celebrated the Blessing of the home ceremony. Not every year as well sometimes I forget to allow time for it.

Of course we will sing We Three Kings of Orient Are today as well:

We Three Kings of Orient Are

We three kings of Orient are
Bearing gifts we traverse afar
Field and fountain, moor and mountain
Following yonder star

O Star of wonder, star of night
Star with royal beauty bright
Westward leading, still proceeding
Guide us to thy Perfect Light

Born a King on Bethlehem's plain
Gold I bring to crown Him again
King forever, ceasing never
Over us all to rein

O Star of wonder, star of night
Star with royal beauty bright
Westward leading, still proceeding
Guide us to Thy perfect light

Frankincense to offer have I
Incense owns a Deity nigh
Pray'r and praising, all men raising
Worship Him, God most high

O Star of wonder, star of night
Star with royal beauty bright
Westward leading, still proceeding
Guide us to Thy perfect light

Myrrh is mine, its bitter perfume
Breathes of life of gathering gloom
Sorrowing, sighing, bleeding, dying
Sealed in the stone-cold tomb

O Star of wonder, star of night
Star with royal beauty bright
Westward leading, still proceeding
Guide us to Thy perfect light

Glorious now behold Him arise
King and God and Sacrifice
Alleluia, Alleluia
Earth to heav'n replies

O Star of wonder, star of night
Star with royal beauty bright
Westward leading, still proceeding
Guide us to Thy perfect light

Today I am also hoping that we can make some sugar cookies in the shape of wise men and decorate them in coloured icing. Once again it is a time factor and how interested the children are.

The last thing I sometimes do is to print out various Wise men colouring pages and wrap them up in a scroll for the children to have at the dinner table for decoration along with the Wise man book mark I make to put in the shoes with the other gifts.
Wise men
Wise men 2
Wise men 3
Wise men 4
Wise men 5
Wise men 6
Wise men 7
Wise men 8
Wise men 9
Wise men 10

A Prayer for Epiphany ~

Lord Jesus
may your light shine our way,
as once it guided the steps of the magi:
that we too may be led into your presence
and worship you,
the Child of Mary,
the Word of the Father,
the King of nations,
the Saviour of mankind;
to whom be glory for ever.
Frank Colquhoun

I pray you have a blessed and happy Epiphany.



The Children prefer this version of the Hymn on YouTube.

I am not sure which I like. I love them both but the children definately prefer the Church version, which is the one I have linked to.
I would be interested in hearing which one you all prefer.

Blessings,

1 comment:

GrandmaK said...

Wishing you a blessed day! Cathy

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