Dear Members and Friends of St John’s,
We had an extraordinary Christmas season at St John’s, and have entered a New Year full of hope and promise for the “new thing” God is creating for our mission and ministry in the city of Columbus. If you missed a holiday service, you are invited to view the services online at our church website,
This Sunday, January 10, we celebrate the season of Epiphany (which occurred on January 6), a season rich with symbols and events, including the story of the three magi following a star to the Christ child (with a special appearance this Sunday of the Three Kings in worship!) We have entered a new spiritual season of celebration of the manifestation of the incarnation, the appearance of God’s Spirit in Jesus.
“Epiphany” is a Greek word that meant “appearance” or “manifestation.” Today we also use the word to reference a sudden intuitive insight, those “aha” or “lightbulb” moments when we see an old problem in a new way. In the season of Epiphany, we see God indwelling in Jesus, so that Christ may dwell in us. We see that the Epiphany (capital “E”) relates to our experiences of epiphany (little “e”), the nature of God’s epiphanies in our lives.
This Sunday, our Scripture texts for the day are Isaiah 60:1-6 and Matthew 2:1-12. My sermon is entitled “Shine Your Light!” as we use Matthew’s Gospel text to rescue the magi from their fixed places in the annual Christmas pageant, and restore them to their biblical roles as key witnesses to both the threat and the promise of the Christ child. We will be challenged to consider how we are (or are not) reflecting the light of Christ’s love in our own lives and in our church.
On Thursday, January 14, at 6pm we will host our winter Taizé service. This 30 minute meditative service features music in the worship style of the Taizé community in France, a contemplative time of worship surrounded by candlelight. This service is a wonderful respite from the chilly weather and post-holiday slump, and will provide spiritual refreshment for your soul in the New Year.
With abundant hope for the New Year,