It’s still Christmas! (Part 2)

A postcard from 2nd Sunday after Christmas 01/02/22

Three days left to say “Merry Christmas!”

There is something magical about the fact that when I drove to church yesterday morning, I had my sleeves rolled up and no jacket. This morning there is snow on the ground and I am looking for my winter coat. Maybe the suddenly cold weather and bit of snow will help us say “Merry Christmas” for a few more days.

But Christmas will come to an end with the Feast of the Epiphany on January 6. The Epiphany begins a season in the church where we will hear the stories of how Jesus’ divinity was revealed in baptism, miracles, and teaching. These readings will allow us to consider our identity and vocation in response to the mystery and revelation of the incarnation.

The Work of Christmas continues…

The Rev. Howard Thurman was a theologian, mystic, and civil rights leader. From the Howard Thurman and Sue Bailey Thurman Collections, Howard Gotlieb Archival Research Center at Boston University.

As we prepare for the end of Christmastide, and for the season after the Epiphany, Howard Thurman’s poem “The Work of Christmas” is a helpful reminder of the Christian vocation.

“The Work of Christmas”

When the song of the angels is stilled,
when the star in the sky is gone,
when the kings and princes are home,
when the shepherds are back with their flocks,
the work of Christmas begins:
to find the lost,
to heal the broken,
to feed the hungry,
to release the prisoner,
to rebuild the nations,
to bring peace among the people,
to make music in the heart.

In reflecting on the New Year Thurman wrote, “In whatever sense this year is a new year for you, may the moment find you eager and unafraid, ready to take it by the hand with joy and gratitude.”

A sermon from St. Barnabas in Roanoke:

Principal text: Matthew 2:1-12

Audio only available here

Coming next

The season after the Epiphany helps us find the joy already present in our lives and reflect on God’s continuous presence and inspiration for our daily living. The readings also invite us to explore what it means to hear, to listen, to attend to God’s spirit in every situation.

  • Jan. 9 – Messiah, Heflin – 1 Epiphany / Identity
  • Jan. 16 – St. Paul’s, Greensboro – 2 Epiphany / Celebration
  • Jan. 23 – Messiah, Heflin – 3 Epiphany / Selflessness
  • Jan. 30 – St. Barnabas, Roanoke – 4 Epiphany / God’s voice shapes
  • Feb. 6 – OFF – 5 Epiphany / God’s voice directs
  • Feb. 13 – Messiah, Heflin – 6 Epiphany / God’s voice heals
  • Feb. 20 – St. Paul’s, Greensboro – 7 Epiphany / God’s voice calls
  • Feb. 27 – Messiah, Heflin – Last Sunday after the Epiphany / The Transfiguration

Published by akhudlow

I am a priest in the Episcopal Church in the Diocese of Alabama. I am a church nerd, printmaker, storyteller, and blogger.

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