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CURRENT CHURCH SEASON ...Epiphany..

The Season of Epiphany (often symbolized by the liturgical color green for life and light) is the five to eight weeks in the Church Year between the Seasons of Christmas and Lent. The length of this season is determined by the date for Easter in any given year. The Epiphany Season always begins on January 6th. which is known as the Festival of The Epiphany that celebrates the arrival of the Magi or "wise men" who saw the manifestation of a star in the east which captured their curiosity and eventually led them to the Christ Child. (Matt. 2:1-12). Overwhelmed with awe and wonder as they beheld the mystery of the Word made flesh, the scriptures report that the wise men worshiped the Christ Child and offered gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. The inclusion of myrrh, a substance frequently used in antiquity as a fragrant spice and preservative for the preparation of the body for burial, is often seen as a subtle but profound foreshadowing of the rejection, suffering, crucifixion and death that Jesus would endure.

The overall focus of the Epiphany Season is on the manifestation of Jesus as the Son of God who is The Light of the World. Throughout the Sundays of Epiphany, the scripture readings center on various events or "epiphanies" in the New Testament and the Life of Christ that "manifest" or "make visible" the identity and mission of Jesus as God's beloved Son and the Light of the World. Key events included in the Epiphany Season are: The appearance of the Star in the East prompting the arrival of the Magi or "wise men" with their offering of gifts, (Matt. 2:1-12); the Baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist in the River Jordan, (Matt. 3:13-17, Luke 3:21-22, Mark 1:9-11, John 1:29-34); the changing of water into wine at the Wedding in Canna of Galilee (John 2:1-11); and The Transfiguration of Jesus's appearance on the Mountain where Peter, James and John hear, see and sense an "epiphany" of Jesus's identity and mission (Matt. 17:1-13, Mark 2:9-13, Luke 9:28-36); and the Good News that Jesus is an "epiphany" of the Light to the nations and the Light of the World (John 1:1-18).

Throughout the history of the Church, the Epiphany Season has often been used as a time to emphasize the outreach and mission of the Church to the whole world both locally and globally. It is a time in which the Church emphasizes the importance of supporting missionaries, outreach, evangelism, charity, social ministry, social justice as well as the command and promise given by Jesus Christ in The Great Commission, "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age." (Matthew 28:19-20).

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The St. Matthew Congregational Annual Meeting is set for January 21th 2018, 11:00am at the Church. Please join us for this important church meeting.

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