St. Michael's Parish - Cobourg

Feast of the Epiphany -Homily January 4, 2015



Today we are celebrating the Epiphany of the Lord. The word Epiphany comes from Greek language, meaning manifestation. We use this word to signify the manifestation of Jesus Christ to the all the nations as represented by the Magi. (Mt 2:1-12).

The Feast of the Epiphany had a significant place in my childhood. As we all know, the Magi, three wise men from the East, brought to Jesus gold, frankincense, and myrrh. In my native country all of us, as children, were preparing to receive the Magi, who were bringing us gifts. Something similar to what happens with Santa here in Canada. We then prepared the food and drink for the Magi and camels, because they were traveling to see Jesus, and they would be hungry and thirsty. Also, we left outside of our room, in the backyard, ours shoes. We were sure that when the Magi passed in front of our home, they should give some beautiful gift to us. Every year all the children were waiting for this Feast and the gifts of the Magi.

            In Rome, a German teacher taught us about artistic representations of the Magi. In some old paintings, the artists had painted the Magi as an Asiatic man, an African man and a European man to signify all the peoples of these continents (it was the portion of the world known in those times); other artists had painted one as a youth, one as an adult and the last as a senior to signify all the ages. The basic idea is the same: in their paintings they want to have present all men and women of different ages and places, and all of them going to worship Jesus, Lord and King.

            In todays Gospel we heard about people who knew about Jesus and acted in different ways. We can see men dividing themselves into the three groups, in which people are always found to be doing in regard to Jesus Christ (1). Let us look at the three reactions.


1. There was the reaction of Herod. The reaction of hatred and hostility. Herod was afraid that this little child was going to interfere with his life, his position and his power, his influence. Therefore, his first instinct was to destroy him.

Pope Francis said: King Herod was interested in the child, not to worship him but to eliminate him. Herod is the powerful man who sees others only as rivals. Deep down, he also considers God a rival, indeed the most dangerous rival of all. In the palace the wise men experience a moment of obscurity, of desolation, which they manage to overcome thanks to the prompting of the Holy Spirit, who speaks through the prophecies of sacred Scripture.


2. There was the reaction of the chief priests and scribes. The reaction of complete indifferenceit did not make the slightest difference to them that the Messiah was born. They were so engrossed in their Temple ritual and their legal discussions, that they completely disregarded Jesus. Jesus meant nothing to them.


3. There was the reaction of the wise men. The reaction of finding, and then following Jesus. They were looking for the truth. They followed the star and met Jesus.  Pope Francis said: following a light, they were searching for the Light.










Our life is a Journey. As the Magi,  we also are travelling from this earth to eternity. We are looking for the TruthJesus.

            Our homework for this week is try to answer for ourselves: Where am I? What is my reaction in front of Jesus?

            We are in the beginning of a New Year. Somebody told me: we have a blank page before uswrite something beautiful. What a wonderful opportunity we all have. We can start now to write this beautiful letter to Jesus with our thoughts, our words and our actions, like the Magi offering gold, frankincense and myrrh. At the end of the year what; what have I written? What did I offer to Jesus? What were my gifts?

Let Our Lady help us to offer beautiful thoughts, words and deeds for this year.

Fr. Higinio



(1)    Cfr. A. VANHOYE, S.I., Le Letture Bibliche delle Domeniche, Anno B, ADP, Roma 2005, 53-57; Klemens Stock S.I., La Liturgia de la Parola. Spiegazione dei Vangeli domenicali e festivi, Anno B, ADP, Roma 2002, 65-68; William Barclay, The daily study Bible. The Gospel of Matthew.







Spiritual Exercises Feb. 13-16/15

Spiritual Exercises for men -(according to the method of St. Ignatius) mark your calendar!

All those who are interested in a deep spiritual experience, a moment of reflection, prayer and discernment, or just want to encounter Jesus in a deeper way, try to come to these Spiritual Exercises: Friday, February 13 to February 16, 2015 here at St. Michaels Parish Centre. To register call the office 905 372-6844 or speak to Fr. Andrew for more information.


CWL: Golden Plough Lodge

Birthday Celebrations

Members of the Catholic Womens League will help celebrate January birthdays at the Golden Plough Lodge on Monday, January 19 from 2:00 to 3:00 pm. Please come out and celebrate with the residents on this, their special occasion. All members of the Parish are welcome to join in.


FYI: Marriage Preparation Program will be held in our Parish the weekends of January 17 and 24. Please keep these couples in your prayers as they prepare for the Sacrament of Marriage.




MARK YOUR CALENDAR: Seniors Social Club: Sunday, January 25, 2015 2:00 pm in the Parish Centre


FYI: Fr. Andrew appreciates all your prayershe writes his exam tomorrow, January 12.

Also please keep him in your prayers as he is travelling to his home in Argentine to visit family, attending his sisters wedding and will return January 29.



Event Plaques

Would you like to have a memorable message posted at the entrance to the Church?  This is a way to preserve the special occasions of our parishioners.  They will be left there for future generations.
Pick up a "Plaque Information Kit" at the back of the Church. They are on the shelf behind the pews, OR call Dorothy Ward at 905 372-3138 OR check at the office if you have any questions.