January 5, 2014 - Solemnity of the Epiphany
Saint Martin de Tours Catholic Church
There are a network of caves in Afghanistan used by the Taliban and Afghan fighters as hideaways for weapons and supplies.
These caves support a culture of death, war, oppression and violence against the dignity of the human person.
They are covered in blood. They are dark places.
They symbolize everything that is wrong with our world.
We live in a dark world, a world filled with war, terrorism, greed, addiction, fear, depression.
In our own country, our freedoms have been thwarted.
Our government increasingly usurps power and spies on it own people, all done to give us the illusion of security.
Multinationals and Internet giants track our every move.
We are media saturated and technology crazed.
We take resources from the earth at alarming rates. And we fail to give back.
Darkness and sin are all around us.
But during this Christmas time, can we travel from the dark, bloody caves of Afghanistan to another cave:
a cave in Bethlehem, a cave that is not dark, a cave that is illuminated by the Light.
This Feast of the Epiphany is a revelation to the nations.
We are called to see the light of Christ shining in the darkness, a light that makes a difference in our dark world.
The mysterious Eastern travelers, the Magi, were searching for meaning in a dark world. They were searching for enlightenment.
Maybe we have come here today because we are trying to do the same.
Maybe we are searching for meaning and purpose in our lives.
Maybe we are seeking something more fulfilling in our careers and professions.
Maybe we are struggling to make a better life for ourselves and our families.
Maybe we are seeking the dignity that rightfully belongs to every human being.
Maybe we are trying not to be overwhelmed by the darkness of sin that is around us.
Maybe we are trying not to be consumed by jealousy, anger and resentment.
Maybe we are trying to have the courage to look reality in the face and transform our lives.
Maybe we are trying to be less critical.
Maybe we are trying to embrace the future with faith and hope and love.
On the Feast of the Epiphany, can we travel from the dark caves of our own sins and failings?
Can we follow the star to the cave in Bethlehem? A cave bathed in light.
Can we behold the Christ child?
Can we fall on our knees in reverent homage?
Can we bring the precious gifts that are our lives and place them at the feet of Jesus? Can we open our treasures and offer him our gifts?
Can we allow the Eucharist that we receive here to strengthen us and fill us with goodness and grace?
Can we allow the glory of the Lord to shine upon us illuminating the dark places, filling our lives with peace and joy and hope and love?