Church of England

Epiphany lowdown:

  • Epiphany means 'to show', 'to make known' or 'to reveal'
  • The Christian feast of Epiphany commemorates the mysterious visitors who came to the Christ child. Their gifts revealed Jesus as Lord and King for the whole world, not just the Jewish nation
  • The story of the visitors is only found in Matthew's Gospel (Chapter 2:1-12). It doesn't tell us how many there were!
  • The word used for the visitors has been translated as Magi, wise men, kings or astrologers
  • The visitors brought gifts which symbolised Jesus' identity: precious gold, linked with kingship; frankincense, a fragrant resin linked with divinity and holiness; myrrh - another resin with a bitter perfume, associated with suffering and mourning
  • The western church celebrates Epiphany on 6th January, 12 days after Christmas
  • The colours of Epiphany are white and gold
  • The Lectionary readings for the Sundays after Epiphany explore the themes of:
    • The revelation of Christ to all nations
    • Jesus' baptism in the River Jordan
    • Christ as the light of the world
    • The public ministry of Jesus Christ, including Jesus' first miracle of turning water into wine at the wedding at Cana
    • Growth in a Christian's baptized identity

The links and downloads in this section offer ideas and resources to use at Epiphany.