A Message from Pastor Kaji

January 4th,2024 Categories: Weekly Letter


Dear Church:

Happy New Year! I hope that this turn of the year has brought on an opportunity for reflection and intention-setting. (If you missed it, I’d suggest spending some time with our elevate series from July and August to help build some faith practices into your intention-setting.)
This Sunday, we celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany, known also as Three Kings Day, which commemorates the Magi visiting the Holy Family after Jesus was born in Bethlehem. This day is so special culturally, but also scripturally. The birth of Jesus is not just a local moment – it is a worldwide event. The Magi signal this magnitude.
The following Sundays we will have a chance to notice the signs and signals that herald God’s epiphanies in our lives. The Epiphany season is one of noticing, paying attention to what God needs us to hear, if we will but listen. And soon, Lent will be upon us! Ash Wednesday falls early this year on Valentine’s Day, which is interesting for a whole number of reasons. I would love to invite you to reflect with us what you might want to set as an intention for your Lenten season. This can help us to plan out some of the thematic content for the season, so please share!
As you prepare for this Epiphany Sunday, I encourage you to reflect on how you see God in the gifts of your life. It’s a great time for intentional gratitude as we all build the discipline of noticing God with us, Emmanuel.
I can’t wait to see you in church!

Pax, Christi, 

Pastor Kaji

Matthew 2:1-12 (Year B, p. 35):

1 Now Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of King Herod, suddenly sages from the East came to Jerusalem, 2 asking, “Where is the one born king of the Judeans? For we have seen his star at its ascent and have come to reverence him.” 3 When King Herod heard this, he was shaken, and all Jerusalem with him; 4 then calling together all the chief priests and religious scholars of the people, he inquired of them where the Messiah would be born. 5 They said to him, “In Bethlehem of Judea; for it has been written by the prophet:
6 ‘And you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
by no means are least among the rulers of Judah;
for from you shall come a ruler
who is to shepherd my people Israel.’”
7 Then Herod secretly called for the sages and learned from them the time when the star had appeared. 8 Then he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go, search diligently for the child, and when you have found him bring me word so that I may also go and reverence him.” 9 When they had heard the king, they left, and there suddenly was the star that they had seen at its ascent going before them until it stopped over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw that the star had stopped, they rejoiced; their joy was exuberant. 11 On entering the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother; and they fell down and reverenced him. Then, opening their treasure, they offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. 12 And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they left for their own country by another road.