Reformed Churchmen

We are Confessional Calvinists and a Prayer Book Church-people. In 2012, we remembered the 350th anniversary of the 1662 Book of Common Prayer; also, we remembered the 450th anniversary of John Jewel's sober, scholarly, and Reformed "An Apology of the Church of England." In 2013, we remembered the publication of the "Heidelberg Catechism" and the influence of Reformed theologians in England, including Heinrich Bullinger's Decades. For 2014: Tyndale's NT translation. For 2015, John Roger, Rowland Taylor and Bishop John Hooper's martyrdom, burned at the stakes. Books of the month. December 2014: Alan Jacob's "Book of Common Prayer" at: January 2015: A.F. Pollard's "Thomas Cranmer and the English Reformation: 1489-1556" at: February 2015: Jaspar Ridley's "Thomas Cranmer" at:

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

6 January. 1662 Book of Common Prayer. Epiphany

6 January.  1662 Book of Common Prayer.  Epiphany.

The Epiphany. -- The Greek name of this Festival ("the Manifestation") turns one’s thoughts to the East for its origin. There it seems clear that in the Epiphany the Greek Church originally combined the celebration (on January 6th) of Our Lord's Nativity, His manifestation at His Baptism, and His self-revelation by miracle at Cana of Galilee--all apparently being conceived as happening on the same day of the year. It was consequently one of the greatest Festivals, and one of the days of solemn Baptism. The manifestation to the Wise Men, if recognised at all, was entirely subordinate. When in the 4th century the Roman usage as to Christmas prevailed in the East, we find the Epiphany, probably borrowed from the East, observed in the West as a separate Festival; but although the old references were not extinct (see the Second Lesson for the Epiphany, Luke iii. 15-23, and the Gospel for the Second Sunday in Epiphany), the manifestation to the Magi -- striking and significant, but lying as an episode outside the history--took such prominence as to obscure all else, and in Mediæval times associated with itself a mass of picturesque legends. The day was, therefore, closely connected with Christmas, as the name "Twelfth Day" shows, and was looked upon as the close of Christmas festivity. The period which it introduces is one of thoughtful meditation on the Christmas mystery, before passing to the preparation for Easter. -- January 6th.

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