Thoughts on the Readings for the Solemnity of the Epiphany (A) 2020

For this Sunday’s readings click on the link below or copy and paste it into your browser. http://usccb.org/bible/readings/010520.cfm 
 
For several years I have gotten together with a group of friends during the month of January for a “mini” retreat at a cabin in northern Wisconsin.   One of the things that amazes me anew each year is the clarity and brightness of the stars at night.   When you get away from the illumination of the lights of the cities, the stars seem to shine with brighter clarity and brilliance.  I suspect this is an experience we all have had.   
 
This memory came back to me as I looked at our readings this weekend for the Solemnity of the Epiphany.   Our Gospel this weekend is the familiar story of the visit of the Magi (who were Gentiles) to the new born Christ child.   This story, which is found only in the Gospel of Matthew, reminds us that Christ was born as savior of all people, no exceptions, no exclusions, no restrictions.   
 
As we read this Gospel, it is interesting to note the details that are not included in it, but have been added over the years.   The Magi have been promoted to Kings.   We have identified their number as three.  And we have even given them names.   
 
Our first reading this weekend is taken from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah.    It is a description of the city of Jerusalem that awaits the returning exiles.  It reminds them that “upon you the Lord shines and over you appears his glory. Nations shall walk by your light and kings by your shining radiance.”   
 
The second reading for this weekend is taken from the Letter of St. Paul to the Ephesians.  It reinforces the message of the Gospel and reminds us that “the Gentiles are coheirs, members of the same body, and copartners in the promise of Christ Jesus through the Gospel.”   
 
Questions for Reflection/Discussion:
 
  1. The revelation of a star guided the Magi.  When have you ever received a revelation that guided you in your life?
  2. If Jesus is the savior of all people, what would you say to those people who want to limit the number of those who will be saved?
  3. What do you need to do to let the light of Christ shine in you that you might lead others to Christ?   
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