Feature Article –We Should All Have an
Educational Helps – by Ned Bustard
We Should All Have an Epiphany
As most of you know my wife loves history. Together we have come to realize that history matters. Building on the past can be a solid ground for creating a future for our children. Knowing why we do what we do is important for us and our children to understand. Many of us grew up with traditions that have been discarded, and this is generally for one reason. When we don’t know why we do something it is easy to drop it as unimportant because it requires extra effort for no apparent reason.
many of us have sung the song We Three
Kings? It was written in 1857 by John Hopkins, Jr., for a Christmas pageant
at the General Theological Seminary in
marks the manifestation of the light of God’s revelation in the Incarnation.
Different manifestations of Christ’s glory and divinity have been celebrated
throughout history. In the past, faithful saints reflected on Christ’s baptism,
the miracle at
6 is known as Epiphany on the Christian calendar. It is sometimes referred to
as the “Twelfth Night,” the 12th Day of Christmas. The song We Three Kings is about Epiphany—the
event of the Magi visiting the baby Jesus. “Now after Jesus was born in
Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men came from
the East to
Some cultures (Latin) actually refer to Epiphany as Three King’s Day, Dia de los Tres Reyes or la Fiesta de Reyes.
may not know it, but one American city has made a national name for itself over
Epiphany. Many of you have heard of Mardi Gras. In
fact if we gave a quiz and asked where the celebration of Mardi Gras takes place, virtually all of us would answer
Gras begins January 6 with Epiphany and continues
until the day before Ash Wednesday. The day before Ash Wednesday is known as
Fat Tuesday, hence the excesses presently accompanying the Mardi Gras celebrations in
Epiphany also sets the background for the song “The Twelve Days of Christmas” and Shakespeare’s play Twelfth Night.
what does the word epiphany mean? It is
a Greek word that means manifestation
or unveiling. Blair Sadler writes,
“On the day of manifestation, we venerate the adoration of the Magi. The Magi
were wise men who are often portrayed as kings. This depiction derives from the
fulfillment of the prophecies in the Psalms that ‘all kings shall fall down
before him’ (72:11). The fact that the Magi bowed down before Jesus symbolizes
the submission of earthly powers to a heavenly power. The Magi brought Christ
symbolic gifts of kingly gold, priestly frankincense, and embalming myrrh as a
foreshadowing of Christ’s death. The Magi ‘beheld the very glory of God that
day—for in the city of
And, what does this matter to us today? As Peter Leithart says, “Epiphany, which began on January 6, means ‘Manifestation,’ and the season commemorates the appearance of Jesus to the Magi, the firstfruits of the gatherings of the Gentiles. Epiphany reminds us that Jesus came as the Light of the world, and that we are sent to call the nations to that Light. It reminds us that the mission is not a program of the church, but the very essence of the church. Epiphany season is an exhortation to be an “apostolic” church, a sent out people.”
The Gentiles! Most of us! Epiphany celebrates the first invitation to the Gentiles to become a children of God. Sounds to me like something to celebrate. Sounds like something to remember. Sounds like something to teach our children.
you see that history does matter. What we teach our children and hold dear to
our hearts does matter. If time travel were really possible, I am sure that the
French immigrants who came to
The Christmas tree is down, the wrapping paper is
on the trash pile, and all the decorations have been put away, but your
celebration need not stop. For most Christians, now is the time for rejoicing
because, beginning with January 6th, the season of Epiphany begins. During this
time the church celebrates the offer of the Gospel to the Gentiles. The good
news of Jesus’ birth comes to the whole world with the arrival of the Magi
(traditionally named Melchor, Gaspar, and Balthazar),
help celebrate, we are holding a coloring contest. Click here to
go to a web page where you can download a picture for your children to color. A
$50 gift certificate from Veritas Press will be given to the family who sends
us the picture we judge best in each age group. There will be winners in each
of three age categories: 3–5, 6–9, 10–12. Submissions
must arrive at Veritas Press,
Free King’s Cake Mix
As mentioned in the Feature Article, one tradition from Epiphany is the King’s Cake, representing the Magi’s visit to the Christ child. We have discovered a mix with a rich and buttery old-world flavor. You may have one FREE kit (a $9.99 value) if you request it while placing a phone order of $50 or more in merchandise during the month of January. If you place your order on our web site, simply enter item number PROMO107 on the Express Order page and click Add to Order.
Q. How do I teach Latin if I’ve never had it myself? How do I teach Wheelocks if it’s more of a college level text?
A. Fortunately today, unlike a few years ago, there are some wonderful Latin programs that have DVDs available with the authors of the program teaching through the text. If I were beginning to teach Latin to my children today I would use the Latin for Children or Latina Christiana teaching DVDs. Both these programs can be taught without the DVDs by parents or teachers quite effectively, as well. The authors had you in mind when they designed them.
If you ultimately want to go through Wheelocks Latin with your children, then it will be important to learn with your child. By the time the children are ready for Wheelocks, you will be, too. Sometimes it is practical, if not necessary, to find a tutor. If you live in an area with a university, call their classics department, and they may have a student willing to tutor for a very reasonable fee.
Q. When do you suggest incorporating modern foreign languages into the curriculum?
A. At Veritas Academy we begin modern foreign languages in 9th grade. By the time a student reaches that point, they have had 5 or 6 years of Latin and 2 years of Greek. Taking on a foreign language then is very easy to do. If you really want your children/students to speak another language and want to start in grammar school, that’s great, but don’t see it as a replacement for Latin. Latin is a tool of leverage for mastering English.
We really want to hear from you. Please submit any questions you’d like answered here to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dr. Leyland Ryken will be the featured
speaker at the 2007 Teacher Training Conference July 18–20 in
Those who choose to take advantage of this foundational learning opportunity will leave invigorated with clear tools, methods and plans to teach and administer a classical Christian education in their school or homeschool. We will also be offering Latin-in-a-Week July 16–20th. Look for a brochure in the spring if you:
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• LIVE IN
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