Today is Epiphany.
As Kelly would say, "It's my favorite."
When all the folderol of the season, sacred and secular, has begun to quiet down, one of the highest holidays of the liturgical churches takes place to commemorate the recognition of the world that new Light has come into it.
Personally, I feel that Epiphany wraps me in light, love, and promise as I say goodbye to the Christmas season. The Ranchers love ceremony, so last year I put together a short one to share with them.
I sent Barry out to buy the roscas--the circular breads studded with candied fruits and nuts traditionally eaten in the Southwest on Three Kings Day, another name for Epiphany.
We found a tiny figure of the Christ child to hide in the rosca. (Tradition holds that the person finding the Christ child in their portion has to give a party for everyone else on the 2nd of February.)
We gathered together in the Pavilion. I gave each person a candle, lighted my own, and turned out the lights. Enveloped in inky darkness except for the small flame I was holding, there were shouts and murmurs and a few wobbly whispers of "I'm scared!"
"Hold on," I said, and lit the candle of the person next to me.
"Oh, I get it," she said, and lit her neighbor's candle.
As the golden light of the candles filled the room, we began to sing "We Three Kings of Orient Are," and processed up the hall to the dining room, where I had placed a creche with the Wise Men (plus Mother Teresa, for good measure) gathered in front of the manger before the Babe.
The Ranchers set their candles on the table and Terry read the scripture passages having to do with the coming of the Magi, the threat from Herod, and the flight into Egypt, by their light.
"Jesus is the Light of the world," I said. "Epiphany is when the world came to know that."
Then we turned on the lights and had our hot chocolate and served our rosca.
Natalie found the Christ child, which obligated the Teresa House ladies to give a party on February 2. Much cheering ensued.
Tonight, we'll do it all again.
And may your Epiphany be filled with Light and love.