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How to find him even without faith


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Fr. Luigi Maria Epicoco - published on 01/06/23

It matters little if we don’t always understand everything about the journey or if we mistakenly ask the wrong person for guidance

Today’s readings can be found here. Read Fr. Epicoco’s brief reflections on the daily Mass readings, Monday through Saturday, here. For Sunday Mass reading commentary from Fr. Rytel-Andrianik, see here.

(Note: Today’s reflection is based on the readings for the Epiphany of the Lord, which is generally celebrated on January 6. In the dioceses of the United States, the feast has been moved to the Sunday between January 2 and January 8.)

The feast of Epiphany is celebrated in this Christmas season to remind us of a truth that Jesus as an adult will proclaim to his disciples: “No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house.” Jesus is the true light that cannot remain hidden; instead, it must be placed on high so that it illuminates everything. 

This is why the scope of today’s feast is of exceptional importance. A light that cannot shine to illuminate is a useless light. To explain this to us, the Gospel tells us the story of the Magi. They are a testimony that even those who have no faith and are seemingly distant can experience an attraction to God that is so strong that they begin a quest, a journey that will eventually lead them inevitably to the feet of this child. 

And it matters little if we don’t always understand everything about the journey or if we mistakenly ask the wrong person for guidance, as happens to them. Even Herod unwittingly contributed to their finding Jesus. Every man and woman is involved in Jesus’ life. We don’t have to have faith as a condition for finding him, just use our humanity to the fullest. 

Faith, then, is a gift that God gives when he wants to and as he sees fit. However, those who receive this gift must also contribute to the Epiphany; that is, they cannot keep this light hidden in their own private space, but must place it high in their own life so that they themselves can become a light that illuminates the night of many others. For Christians, living the Epiphany means bearing witness.


Father Luigi Maria Epicoco is a priest of the Aquila Diocese and teaches Philosophy at the Pontifical Lateran University and at the ISSR ‘Fides et ratio,’ Aquila. He dedicates himself to preaching, especially for the formation of laity and religious, giving conferences, retreats and days of recollection. He has authored numerous books and articles. Since 2021, he has served as the Ecclesiastical Assistant in the Vatican Dicastery for Communication and columnist for the Vatican’s daily newspaper L’Osservatore Romano.

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