First Sunday after the Epiphany – January 10, 2021

[The following is an excerpt from my sermon on the Feast of Epiphany]

“Epiphany has been celebrated from the earliest days of the church; as early as the end of the 2nd century, it became a solid part of the Calendar and of our theology.

“Epiphany literally means, “manifestation or appearance” and recounts the revelation of God to the world. Of course, that revelation – that appearance – happens at incarnation, but it neither started nor ends with the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem. Epiphany must be understood as the ongoing revelation of God to the entire globe. The light of God is not contained nor limited to the light that only a small group of privileged people receive, but it is a universal light for all the world to see.

“On this holy day, I am taken to the wonders and studies of particle (and quantum) physics.  [Please do not judge me by my attempts to explain physics, let alone quantum physics! I am less than an amateur physicist.] Physicists have been studying light over many decades. One of their efforts has been trying to get light to bend on its own. Can we, as we can with a football receiver, instruct light to go out 10 yards and make a hard right? We know that light can bend when it hits a mirror. It will change direction when the effects of gravity are in play. Perhaps tellingly, theorists have been unsuccessful in these efforts. It may come down to this: light is light, and it can not, by itself, be manipulated or changed once it is let ‘out of the bag.’

“I find a lot of theology here! That the light of God too, cannot be controlled or changed or narrowed to a ray that is either comfortable or self-focused. The light of God is far broader than anyone’s religious experience. God’s light is far broader and brighter than our own experience. In other words, the light of God comes in many, many ways and in ways we cannot claim as bending towards US. Those who have been utterly transformed by God’s love in the Christian community find God’s light shining in our lives and drawing us forward. For us and our experience, this beautiful and wonderful and pure light is “The Christ.” However, this does not mean God cannot reveal Godself to people outside our experience, in other ways and in other voices.

“The Light, the revelation of God, cannot be controlled. We cannot say to anyone, “I’m sorry we have the monopoly on God’s light and we claim the word of God as our own privileged domain.” Instead, the Epiphany of Christ confirms that however it comes, the light of God is available and accessible to all.

“The “uncontrollable” light of God comes in different guises and forms, but all of them say and speak the same language: the language of love, a word of peace, and the voice of reconciliation to heal humanity from anything that would divide us.”

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Online Services for this week:
Sunday, Monday, Wednesday, Friday Morning Prayer, 9 a.m. The worship bulletin for January 10 is here.
Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday Evening Prayer, 8 p.m.
No Wednesday night Bible Fellowship this week as the Bishop’s Committee is meeting.

My Zoom office hours are Tuesdays at 10 a.m. Here’s my Zoom link.

Rev. Karen’s Zoom office hours are Thursdays at 10 a.m. Here’s Rev. Karen’s Zoom link.

Your Vicar,