It’s the Feast of Theophany. Special services for the commemoration of the Baptism of Christ began yesterday and culminate tomorrow. I was so happy to be able to have a fairly contemplative day, morning and evening.
In the middle of the day we celebrated at church with a Vesperal Liturgy, after which nuns from a nearby monastery (a different monastery from the one where I got the big squash) brought food for us who had been fasting: warming vegetable soup, salad with lots of trimmings, bread and spreads, and even halvah for dessert.
Last year I wrote a bit more about Theophany. This year I don’t have anything new to say about the feast; I am trying to just soak it up and be changed by it, though I feel too dull to follow Father Stephen very far on the topic. I do want to share an icon I found on http://www.icon-art.info where I spent a while browsing. This mosaic is from 11th-century Greece.
Here’s a teaser clip from Fr. Stephen’s post that I linked to above:
The world and all that is in it is given to us as icon – not because it has no value in itself – but because the value it has in itself is the gift of God – and this is seen in its iconicity.
At Theophany, the waters of the world are revealed to be both Hades and the gate of Paradise…. Love alone reveals things for what they are, and transforms them into what they were always intended to be. It is the gift of God.