Epiphany

The Influence of Interventionism on Foreign and Domestic Policy

So far, at least, it could have been worse. President Trump chose the least aggressive of three military options presented to him when the U.S., U.K., and France bombed suspected chemical plants in Syria last week, according to news accounts. And the Wall Street Journal says the U.S. is seeking an Arab force made up [...]

Abandon All Pride Those Who Seek the Kingdom

At the very end of Evelyn Waugh’s novel on the finding of the True Cross, Helena, he writes a paean to the Magi in the form of a prayer: You are especial patrons, and patrons of all latecomers, of all who have a tedious journey to make to the truth, of all who are confused [...]

Counting Christmas: Celebrating the Twelfth Night

Eight octave days, culminating in a New Year. Twelve days before Epiphany. Forty days until the Presentation. This is how we count the days of Christmas. The octave and forty days are biblical, prescribed by the Mosaic Law for Circumcision and the dedication in the Temple of a male who opens his mother’s womb. Through [...]

Epiphany: A Feast of Light

Several years ago, I had a student in my English class who was blind from birth—Charlie had lost his eyesight due to oxygenation at his premature delivery, weighing less than two pounds when he came into the world. We were reading Shakespeare’s King Lear that day. Not an easy thing to do with a class [...]

Epiphany Brings Thoughts of Christian Persecution in the East

Being a New Yorker, I only go to the top of the Empire State Building about once every thirty-five years, and I have been to the Statue of Liberty just twice. Merely once in my life have I welcomed the new year in Times Square, and I had the impression that I was the only [...]

The Hand of God

Save for those who ski or take vacations in the south, January and February are not the most charming months and they did not exist at all on the oldest Roman calendar, which had only ten months. Winter was a temporal vacuum and the less said about it the better.  Only in the eighth century before Christ were they [...]

The Star of Bethlehem

In Matthew 2:1, we read the following:  “Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea, in the days of King Herod, behold, Magi came from the East to Jerusalem, saying, ‘Where is he that is born King of the Jews?  For we have seen his star in the East and have come to worship [...]

Why “Celebrate” Christmas—and the Epiphany?

Did you know that Christmas celebrations were banned in Scotland until 1958?  I certainly didn’t, not until my son started working on his sixth grade “Christmas around the World” report.  I haven’t looked up what the English did in this regard (Scotland always has had a good deal of autonomy within Britain, and never stopped [...]

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