The Baptism of Chirst
ALMIGHTY and everlasting God, who dost govern all things in heaven and earth; Mercifully hear the supplications of thy people, and grant us thy peace all the days of our life; Amen.
Archbishop Cranmer translated this from Latin. Originally a prayer for outward peace.
In the Early Church, the birth of Christ, the Magi visit, and Baptism were all celebrated on the 6th. The Protestant Episcopal Church moved the baptism Gospel to the 2nd Sunday after Epiphany, to remember this event during Epiphany . The Lutheran Church remembers the Baptism on Third Sunday after Christmas. The Latin Church remembers it on the First Sunday after Epiphany. The Orthodox Church continues to celebrate the Baptism on the Theophany, 6 January, with the visit of the Magi. Theophany literally means "Manifestation of God".
We shall now say something about the present feast. Many celebrate the feastdays and know their designations, but the cause for which they were established they know not. Thus concerning this, that the present feast is called Theophany -- everyone knows; but what this is -- Theophany, and whether it be one thing or another, they know not. And this is shameful -- every year to celebrate the feastday and not know its reason.... Why then is this day called Theophany? Because Christ made Himself known to all -- not then when He was born -- but then when He was baptised. Until this time He was not known to the people. And that the people did not know Him, Who He was, listen about this to John the Baptist, who says: "Amidst you standeth, Him Whom ye know not of" (Jn.1:26). And is it surprising that others did not know Him, when even the Baptist did not know Him until that day? "And I -- said he -- knew Him not: but He that did send me to baptise with water, about This One did tell unto me: over Him that shalt see the Spirit descending and abiding upon Him, This One it is Who baptiseth in the Holy Spirit" (Jn. 1:33)...
Read it all at the link.
Released by Primus Pilus-Sabbatical
Legio Christi-Ecclesia Militans
"Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another" [St. Paul's Epistle to the Romans 14:19]
* ORDO CENTURIONUM * IN HOC SIGNO VINCES * TIME DEUM ET OPERARE IUSTITIAM