Weekly Letter (Jan 8 ’18)

Dear Parents,

First some happy news. The heat is back on! Thanks to the tireless work of Mr. Terry Trevino, Mr. Szymon Dziadzia and the engineers with whom we’ve contracted, the chill is out of the air. A section of the hallway floor is still under construction, however, and will be through the week.  The boys’ bathroom will remain accessible and in full service. We’ve also established detour emergency, entrance and egress routes for the classes that usually use the hallway to access the building during reconstruction. A big hearty thank you to the parish and preschool for assisting with covering the cost for this unexpected work.

This week, our 8th graders are in the throes of high school entrance testing and interviews. And we’re looking forward to soon meeting our kindergarten applicants. So, to sustain us as we close out the Christmas season and continue our work (thawing out) here at school, here’s a slightly edited throwback on our celebration of the Epiphany. It is one of my favorite Mr. Hanley letters:

epiphany |əˈpifənē|
noun (pl. epiphanies) (also Epiphany)
• the manifestation of Christ to the Gentiles as represented by the Magi (Matthew 2:1–12).
• the festival commemorating the Epiphany on January 6.

It is a story we all know, but have we really spent much time thinking about it? The three wise men (or Magi) who followed the star to Bethlehem were doing so because they believed that a king had been born. But they had no clear idea of what kind of king he would be, so they created a test for the baby king.

They brought with them three gifts: gold, frankincense and myhrr. Their thought was to place each of the three gifts in front of the baby and see which one he reached for. After seeing which gift, he chose they would know what kind of a king he would be.

If the child chose the gold, he would be a “worldly” king interested in the things of this earth. If he chose the frankincense he would be a “heavenly” king offering incense to God. If he reached out for the myhrr he would be just like every other man and his life would end in death.

They must have been surprised and a bit confused when Jesus reached out and took all three gifts. Jesus chose to live among us as one of us. His love for us was (and still is) so strong that he had to share our earthly experience with us. In that sense He was a “worldly” king. But by grabbing the frankincense Jesus indicated that he was also a “heavenly” king whose mission was to bring the people closer to God. Finally, by taking the myhrr, Jesus foretold of His own death. (Myhhr is a type of perfume that was used to anoint the dead.)

The concept of resurrection was probably not one that the Magi were familiar with. Yes, Jesus would die just as every other man or woman has or will. But He rose from the dead to show us that life does not end but it changes.

Change is part of life and adapting to our new circumstances is what makes us human.

To be sure, the love of God is eternal and it is ours. Be at peace as the Christmas season ends and always remember that God loves you.

In God’s Light and Love,

Mrs. Theresa Poon

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