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Feast of the Epiphany 2021 Date And Significance: Know the History, Traditions And Celebrations Related to Three Kings Day

Epiphany is among the three oldest and major festival days in Christianity, others being Christmas and Easter. It is celebrated on January 6 by some Christian sects, including Roman Catholics, and on January 19 by some Eastern Orthodox churches. In the West, the time period between December 25 and January 6 is known as the Twelve Days of Christmas. Epiphany is a feast day, or a day of commemoration, which marks the visit of the Magi (meaning the Three Wise Men or Three Kings) to the Infant Jesus (Christ from his nativity until age 12).

Epiphany Traditions & Celebrations in India

According to Christian belief, the Magi — Balthasar, Melchior, and Gaspar (or Casper), the kings of Arabia, Persia, and India, respectively, followed a guiding star to Bethlehem to meet Infant Jesus. The three are believed to have brought gifts for Jesus which includes gold by Melchior, myrrh by Balthasar, and incense by Gaspar. In Kerala, ‘Denha’ is an annual celebrated attended by a big congregation. A grand ceremony is held at the St. Mary’s Orthodox Syrian Cathedral in Piravom. Three priests wearing ecclesiastical robes and holding golden crosses move with a procession for 5 km from the Peppathi Chapel to the Piravom church. St Thomas Day 2020: Know The History, Practices And Celebrations of the Day Dedicated to the Apostle.

Epiphany Traditions & Celebrations in Different Countries

Different countries celebrate the day by following varying customs and traditions. It is also known as ‘The festival of the Three Magic Kings’. In Spain on Epiphany morning, local bakers make a cake called a ‘Roscón’ (ring-shaped roll) filled with cream or chocolate and are decorated with a paper crown. Some churches celebrate Epiphany to remember both the visit of the Wise Men and Jesus’s Baptism!

Epiphany Eve is also known as Twelfth Night which marks the end of the traditional Christmas celebrations. Some take down their Christmas celebrations on this day time while others leave them up until Candlemas. In Italy, children get their presents on Epiphany which is traditionally believed to be brought by an old lady called ‘Befana’. In Portugal, people take part in Epiphany carol singing known as the ‘Janeiras’. In Mexico Epiphany is known as ‘El Dia de los Reyes’ (the day of The Three Kings). In New Orleans, Louisiana, in the USA, on Epiphany/King’s Day, the Christmas Tree is either takedown or the ornaments are replaced with those in purple, gold and green ones called a ‘Mardi Gras Tree’!

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Jan 04, 2021 01:50 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).

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