By Louis Drossos and Fr. Tim Alikakos
GOYA Session – To understand the significance of the feast of Epiphany for our faith and salvation, and the traditions surrounding it.
Sing or read the Apolytikion of Epiphany
Lord, when You were baptized in the Jordan, the veneration of the Trinity was revealed. For the voice of the Father gave witness to You, calling You Beloved, and the Spirit, in the guise of a dove, confirmed the certainty of His words. Glory to You, Christ our God, who appeared and enlightened the world.
Discuss the Apolytikon of Epiphany. Use the icon of the Epiphany to help illustrate the hymn and to get the participants thinking about the feast.
Select three readers to read the following Scripture passages:
1) Matthew 3:13-17
2) Mark 1:9-11
3) Luke 3:21-22
Lead the group to talk about the Scripture passages using these questions:
1) What comes to your mind after hearing/reading these gospel passages?
2) What are the most important aspects and points of these readings?
3) How do you think they relate to your faith?
4) What kind of traditions are associated with this feast?
5) How would you explain the feast of Epiphany to someone who is not Orthodox?
Talk to your parents/family about your own baptism. Consider going to Confession, which is a renewal of that pure, clean state that we are in when we are baptized. Challenge yourself to truly wear the armor of Christ you were given at your baptism.
Read or sing the Apolytikion again.