January 3, 2018

Homily for the Epiphany of the Lord, January 7, 2018, Year B

Fr. René J. Butler, M.S.
Provincial Superior, La Salette Missionaries of North America
Hartford, Connecticut

I always hesitate to announce that the homily that I am about to give will be short, but I’ll risk it. This will be a short homily. I hope you will fill in the blanks by pausing to ponder the questions raised along the way.

All of us Christians are disciples of Christ. Even those of us who are cradle Catholics at some point “became” disciples in a personal way. Something led us to that moment. That was our star of Bethlehem. Or, to compare our experience to that of St. Paul, that was our road to Damascus. Can you remember what that was? A person? A place? A thing? An event?

The Magi found him, rejoiced, and laid their gifts before him. Paul rejoiced and gave his life to Christ. At some point, we found him, and rejoiced. What gifts did we bring then? What gifts do we bring now?

The Magi came to “do him homage.” (The word “homage” occurs three times in this Gospel.) Paying homage to the Lord was their desire, but also their need. So, too, for us. At some point we made that same act of humility, of recognition of the Lord’s place in our life. That was our homage. Do you remember when that was? What form did it take then? What form does it take now?

It’s a good thing to review these things from time to time,
            to renew our discipleship.
                        to deepen our homage.
                                    to make a fuller gift of ourselves.
                                                to continue to discover him,
                                                            wherever he encounters us,                                              with the help of whatever star he sends us.

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