We have seen his star and have come with gifts to adore him.
Magi, wise visitors from the East, come to pay their homage to the Infant Christ. In this ancient mosaic they are of three different ages, and they advance with great intention, holding with arms extended their fantastically-shaped gifts. These Magi represent all that is opulent, foreign, extraordinary, even esoteric and exotic. They wear Phrygian caps, colorful leggings, gold and jewel-encrusted tunics and capes. They represent all the nations and ages of humanity with their wisdom and accomplishments, acknowledging the preeminence of Christ Jesus; he who is all beauty, all wisdom, all truth.
As Abbot Damian reminded us in this morning's homily, the Magi follow the star with great desire and are overjoyed at seeing it rest over the Child. Father Abbot went on to say that many "stars" shine in our own lives, pointing to Christ's presence in our daily encounters with one another. These epiphanies great and small are the presence of God, which comes to us veiled in the beauty and love we may experience. God in Christ is breaking through to visit us from on high.
The Three Kings, mosaic, Byzantine School, 6th century, Sant'Apollinare Nuovo, Ravenna, Italy.