Thursday, January 1, 2015THE HOLY NAME OF OUR LORD
A short history of the Feast of the Holy Name, which coincides with New Year's Day, is in Lesser Feast and Fasts, as follows:
"The designation of this day as the Feast of the Holy Name is new to the 1979 revision of the Prayer Book. Previous Anglican Prayer Books called it the Feast of the Circumcision. January first is, of course, the eighth day after Christmas Day, and the Gospel according to Luke records that eight days after his birth the child was circumcised and given the name Jesus.
The Law of Moses required that every male child be circumcised on the eighth day from his birth (Leviticus 12:3); and it had long been the custom to make of it a festive occasion, when family and friends came together to witness the naming of the child.
The liturgical commemoration of the Circumcision is of Gallican origin, and a Council in Tours in 567 enacted that the day was to be kept as a fast day to counteract pagan festivities connected with the beginning of the new year. In the Roman tradition, January first was observed as the octave day of Christmas, and it was specially devoted to the Virgin Mother.
The early preachers of the Gospel lay stress on the name as showing that Jesus was a man of flesh and blood, though also the Son of God, who died a human death, and whom God raised from death to be the Savior (Acts 2:32; 4:12). The name was given to Jesus, as the angel explained to Joseph, because he would 'save his people from their sins' (Matthew 1:21). (The word means 'Savior' or 'Deliverer' in Hebrew.)"
You might consider reading these sermons in the archive regarding the Holy Name.
Eternal Father, who didst give to thine incarnate Son the holy name of Jesus to be the sign of our salvation: Plant in every heart, we beseech thee, the love of him who is the Savior of the world, even our Lord Jesus Christ; who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen.
Friday, January 2, 2015
Saturday, January 3, 2015
Sunday, January 4, 2015THE SECOND SUNDAY AFTER CHRISTMAS DAY
O God, who didst wonderfully create, and yet more wonderfully restore, the dignity of human nature: Grant that we may share the divine life of him who humbled himself to share our humanity, thy Son Jesus Christ; who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Monday, January 5, 2015
Tuesday, January 6, 2015THE EPIPHANY
The Epiphany celebrates Jesus revealed as Christ. January 6 is not only the Feast itself, but also the beginning of a season in which we come to know, one epiphany at a time, Jesus of Nazareth as the Messiah, our Savior and Redeemer, very God of very God.
In 2018, we celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany not only on January 6 (with a said Mass in the Chantry Chapel at 12:10pm), but also on Sunday, January 7 with choral services at 11am and 4pm.
At Saint Thomas, we also celebrate the visit of the wise men to the Christ child at an Epiphany Procession, which also includes commemorations of Christ's baptism in the River Jordan and also Christ's first miracle at the wedding of Cana. In 2018, the Epiphany Procession is at 11am and 4pm on Sunday, January 14.
To more fully understand the season of Epiphany, which extends all the way though Shrove Tuesday (the day before Ash Wednesday), consider reading or listening to these sermons.
O God, who by the leading of a star didst manifest thy only begotten Son to the peoples of the earth: Lead us, who know thee now by faith, to thy presence, where we may Behold thy glory face to face; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.