i sing a song…

One of my favorite hymns is “I Sing a Song of the Saints of God”  by Lesbia Scott.  If you’re not familiar with it, you can listen to it here, as you read the rest of this post.   In the Episcopal/Lutheran Church I belong to, we always sing this hymn in early November – in celebration of All Saints Day.

Today, obviously, isn’t All Saints Day, but stick with me.  I’ll get back to why I even brought it up.  In the meantime, let’s talk about what today IS – Epiphany.     According to about.com:

Epiphany, also known as “Three Kings Day” and “Twelfth Day,” is  a Christian holiday commemorated on January 6. It falls on the twelfth day after Christmas, and for some denominations signals the conclusion of the twelve days of the Christmas season.

The word epiphany means “manifestation” or “revelation” and is commonly linked in Western Christianity with the visit of the wise men (Magi) to the Christ child. Through the Magi, Christ revealed himself to the gentiles.

In short, it’s a big day for The Church.  One of my long-time Epiphany rituals is to pack-up my Christmas decorations.   So it’s the day I make a physical, spiritual and emotional shift from waiting for something magnificent to happen (Advent) to celebrating that something magnificent has happened (Christmas) to stepping back into The Real World (the Church season after Epiphany is called Ordinary Time).

Mari n meNow, back to singing a song of saints.  The modern Christian church honors its official Saints on the anniversary of that Saint’s death.  Today is also the second anniversary of my sister’s death.   Like way too many people, cancer took Mari way.too.soon.  I spent last January 6 in a  major funk.  I’m not going to do that this year.   Starting today, I’m going to honor Mari by celebrating her.  As I take down my Christmas decorations, I’ll listen to her favorite kind of music – country.  I’ll remember the great times she and I shared and all that she taught me.  I’ll laugh, cry and sing.  I’ll vacuum, leaving the telltale ridges in my carpet that Mari loved.  After my home is ready for Ordinary Time, I’ll fix Mari’s favorite meal – seared sea scallops with fire roasted asparagus & tomatoes.

Yep, this year I’m celebrating a new holy day – EpiphaMari.

How do you celebrate those you love?

14 thoughts on “i sing a song…

  1. I feel your pain, Lisa, and I feel your determination to celebrate Mari. As usual, you inspire me. My dad started me on this path. Before he died, he said, “Remember me laughing.” And every time I think of my mom, I think of her breaking all her own rules, yelling, “Yea, 4-point!” when I walked across the stage for my master’s degree certificate. Celebrating their lives makes all the memories burn brightly. I hope you feel Mari’s arms around you while she makes you laugh with a funny face. Take care, Lisa. Great blog post.

  2. Ephipha-Mari! Now you know she is just sitting up on her cloud and grinning big time when she sees this! Do you feel the warmth and the love washing over you? I am 35 miles away from you and I can feel it!!!

  3. Lisa what a beautiful way to honor your sister and give yourself the gift of rejoicing the gift of her life! I’m sure Mari is hugging you tight and smiling BIG!

  4. THANKS to ALL of you for joining in my first annual EpiphiMari celebration. love.just.rocks!

  5. What a wonderful way to remember Mari! Thanks for the inspiration! I want to find out what my sister Mae’s favorite meal was, so I can celebrate on March 7th! Love you, sweet girl!

  6. Thank you Lisa. Next year on October 4, I hope to celebrate the life of my sister who was taken to be with God and into his eternal security this past year. I try not to dwell on the years I am missing being with her but the quality of the relationship that we had, the years with her and the memories.

  7. Thoughts of you today my dear Lisa as you celebrate the life of your beloved Mari. What an inspiration you are. For most of the past 23 years I have spent July 3 (the anniversary of Jim’s death) and October 20 (his birthday) in a bit of a funk. This year…2016… I will celebrate the life of my brother on these two special days. Thanks for sharing…and keeping me going! Love you Lisa!

  8. Lee, i’ll be sending you extra love on July 3 and Oct 20, as you miss and celebrate Jim.

  9. Laura, i’ll be sending you extra love on Oct 4, as you miss and celebrate your dear sister.

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