The Epiphany (1 A.D.)

This was the showing of Our Lord as a Child to the Gentile Kings. The Epiphany occurred twelve days after the birth of Jesus. The English call it Twelfth Night. It is one of the most important feasts in the Catholic Church. The Epiphany is God letting us know simply and dramatically that though He was born of the Jews, He was destined for the Gentiles. The Jews rejected Jesus. Their Temple was crashed to the ground in the year 70, and has never been built up since. Gentile Kings came over a thousand miles from the East to greet Jesus at His birth. This feast is often celebrated on the first Sunday after January 1.

The Sunday within the octave of the Epiphany is the feast of the Holy Family. This Holy Family is now in Heaven, all three, in body and in soul. Saint Joseph’s grave was opened on Good Friday, the day that Jesus died. Saint Joseph ascended into Heaven, in body and in soul, with Jesus, forty days after the first Easter. Twenty-five years later, in the year 58, Mary, when she was seventy-two years old, died, and three days later she was assumed into Heaven, anxious to help us when we pray, waiting to receive us when we die.

The octave of the Epiphany, January 13, is the day on which a special Mass is said in the Catholic Church to commemorate the Baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist in the River Jordan. Under recent liturgical changes, if the octave of the Epiphany falls on a Sunday, then the feast of the Holy Family is celebrated on that day and there is no commemoration made of the Baptism of Jesus that year.

Adoration of the Magi by Fra Angelico

Adoration of the Magi by Fra Angelico

  • Viki

    Where did the information come from about Joseph’s ascension?