The Merriam Webster dictionary defines an Epiphany as (1): a usually sudden manifestation or perception of the essential nature or meaning of something. (2): an intuitive grasp of reality through something (such as an event) usually simple and striking. (3): an illuminating discovery, realization, or disclosure.
The Epiphany of the Lord that we celebrated two weeks ago certainly meets these criteria. Foreign Magi, following a very unusual and striking star, encounter the baby Jesus, and understand that he is the savior not only of the Jews, but of the Gentiles as well. Their reverence for the child may have caused an epiphany for the Jews surrounding him at the time, including Mary and Joseph.
Our Eastern Christian brothers and sisters celebrate three such manifestations or epiphanies. The first is the arrival of the Magi with their gifts, the revelation of Jesus as savior for all. We heard about the second in last week’s gospel. The now grown Jesus, about to embark on his public ministry, first seeks out his cousin John and requests baptism. John, knowing who Jesus is, questions this, saying that it is Jesus who should be baptizing him. But he obeys, and when Jesus comes up out of the water, many see a dove descending on him, and hear God’s voice from heaven saying to Jesus “you are my beloved Son. In you I am well pleased.” In this way, Jesus’ special relationship to the divine is revealed or manifested to those present (and to those who will hear their testimony later).
In this week’s reading from John’s gospel we hear of the third of these epiphanies. Jesus (with a little prompting from his mother) changes water into wine at a wedding feast at Cana. Much has been written about Jesus’ choice of venues and circumstances for his first miracle. Some say that a wedding feast where he provides the lacking wine is a metaphor for the kingdom of God. Others see Jesus’ generosity filling six stone water jars, each with a 20 to 30 gallon capacity, with wine of a superior quality as a sign of the abundant life that God calls us to. Still others point to the joyous occasion that Jesus obviously intended to enjoy as pointing to his humanity. But I think all can agree that Jesus’ divinity was also manifested here.
There is another aspect to see here as well. As is the case in so many of Jesus’ miracles, the beneficiaries were active participants. The wedding couple and their family provided the stone jars and the water, not to mention the event and the invitation that brought Jesus and his mother there. And Jesus’ mother Mary provided a little encouragement.
How can we manifest Jesus to others? How can we create epiphanies in our lives?
Dear Parish Family,
On this, the last day of the Christmas season, we experience once again a Great Epiphany. Today we celebrate the feast of the Baptism of the Lord. There are many levels to this Great Epiphany.
In our first epiphany, God gives us salvation, by sending his only son, who humbled himself and became human. He becomes the bridge for humanity to reach God. His Salvation is for all nations, especially those on the margins, the forgotten.
In this our second epiphany, the Holy Trinity is revealed to us, the Holy Spirit descending in the bodily form of a dove and God's voice speaking, revealing Jesus as his son, both human and divine. The one true God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, shows Himself in Christ, through Him, with Him and in Him.
At his Baptism, Jesus being divine and free of any sin, humbled himself and had John baptized him. Just as the Holy Spirit descended on Jesus then, every time someone is baptized, the Holy Spirit continues to descend over us, filling us with his Grace and making us new creations, free of sin. At Baptism we too are declared children of God, therefore making us all brothers and sisters.
In the Rite of Baptism, we are anointed with the Chrism oil, as priest, prophet and king. This should be a reminder of our mission, just like Jesus, after he was baptized he began his ministry, we too are given the power through the Holy Spirit to go out into the world and begin our ministry. With every sacrament, we continue to receive his Grace and strength to follow in Jesus path.
In Celebration of Jesus baptism and our own, look for your Baptismal keepsakes and share them with your family. Let us celebrate that we are God's Beloved.
Faith Formation Minister
Learn and Practice Spanish.
A new ministry for those healing from divorce
First & Third Tuesday of the month
Grace Martinez, Cynthia Jones Campbell, Jett Clyne.
Photo by Julius Acero
Auction Items Needed!
If you own a business, please consider donating goods or services. If you work at a business, please ask your employer. If you would like to donate gift cards to restaurants or movies, tickets to plays, concerts or sporting events or vacation homes or timeshares please contact email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
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Thanks and blessings for being a part of this effort to support Youth Ministry!
Fairways to Heaven event:
Third Wednesday of the month
Wednesday, March 13
San Fernando room
Contact Dave McCormick
We are the Catholic Christian men of Padre Serra Parish who witness to the potential of God's presence in our fellow men parishioners. We are involved in our liturgical celebrations and enriched in the life of our parish. We serve the needs of one another, our families, the community and those in need.
If you are interested in becoming involved and wish to be on our mailing list please contact us.
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Men’s Ministry: Tony Likovich, Dave McCormick, Lee Pasaraba.
Photo by Julius Acero
We gather. We pray. We write.
New members are welcome anytime to our friendly group. We explore and practice different types of writing and read our work to one another each week. Some days we do “free writing” for ten minutes on a chosen topic. Other weeks we read our prepared pieces (up to 500 words) on a designated subject. Our topics are not overtly “religious,” but give us an opportunity to express the concerns of our souls. Many consider the experience to be healing. We encourage humor and playfulness; we laugh a lot. We inform each other about writing resources, and we share equally the responsibility for the successful working of the group.
This is as much a faith sharing group as it is a writing group. We pray together. We take care of one another. Our comments on one another’s writing are constructive and honor the deep feelings that are expressed.
Also visit: Adults
Friday, March 22 - Sunday, March 24
SEEDS (Sisters ~ Embracing ~ Enlightening ~ Daughters of Faith) is a monthly evening of spirituality for women to meet in fellowship to share the Word of God and grow in faith. We are currently reading and studying The Friendship Project.
Also visit: Women's Ministry, Groups
For centuries, this popular tradition of blessing homes is associated with today’s solemnity of the Epiphany. For this blessing ritual, you will need chalk and a small bottle of holy water. Begin by gathering family members and friends around the front door of your home.
Leader: In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Let us pray. May Christ bless this home. Amen.
With chalk, sign the main door: 20 + C + M + B + 19
The numbers represent the new year and the letters represent the initials of the Magi: Caspar, Melchior, and Balthazar. It may also be interpreted as the Latin phrase "Christus mansionem benedicat" which means "Christ bless this house."
Leader: A reading from the book of Deuteronomy.
Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength. These commandments I give you are to be in your hearts. Place them on the door-frames of your home and on your entry gate. The Word of the Lord.
Then move inside to sprinkle each room with holy water.
Bless this household through all the days to come, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, forever and ever. Amen.
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Holy Day Of Obligation
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