One Minute Reflection – 6 January – The Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord, Readings: Isaiah 60:1-6, Psalms 72:1-2, 7-8,10-11, 12-13, Ephesians 3:2-3, 5-6, Matthew 2:1-12
“They fell down and worshipped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.” – Matthew 2:11
REFLECTION – “Guided by the Star, the wise men from the East, having arrived in Bethlehem, entered the house in which the Blessed Virgin Mother was staying with her Child. They opened their treasures and offered the Lord three gifts – Gold, Frankincense, and Myrrh – thereby acknowledging Him as Lord, true Man,and true King.
Holy Church also offers these same gifts to her Saviour everyday without ceasing. She offers Him Frankincense by acknowledging and believing in Him, the true Lord and Creator of all. She offers Him Myrrh, when she affirms, that He assumed the substance of our flesh, in which He willed to suffer and die for our salvation. And she offers Him, Gold by believing, without a doubt, that He reigns eternally with the Father and the Holy Ghost. …
Alternatively, the offering of these gifts may be taken in a mystical sense. Heavenly wisdom is symboliSed by Gold, according to the verse of Solomon, which says: “A priceless treasure lies in the mouth of the sage” (cf. Prv 21:20). … By Frankincense, pure prayer is to be understood, as the psalmist says: “Let my prayer rise like incense in your sight, O Lord” (Ps 141:2). For when our prayer is pure, it yields a purer fragrance to the Lord than the smoke of burning incense and just as such smoke rises upward, so does our prayer ascend to the Lord. Myrrh can be taken as the mortification of our flesh. Thus we offer the Lord, Gold when we shine in His Sight with the light of heavenly wisdom …. We offer Him Frankincense when we send up pure prayer before Him and Myrrh, when, “mortifying our flesh with its vices and passions” (Gal 5:24) by self-control, we carry the cross behind Jesus.” – St Bruno of Segni O.Cart. (c 1030 -1101) Bishop (1st Sermon on the Epiphany ; PL 165, 863).
PRAYER – “Give me, therefore, I pray Thee, this Gold, this Incense and this Myrrh. Give me the Gold of Thy holy Love, give me the spirit of holy prayer, give me the desire and strength to mortify myself in everything that displeases Thee. I am resolved to obey Thee and to love Thee but Thou knowest my weakness, oh, give me the grace to be faithful to Thee!- St Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787) Doctor of the Church.