St. Joan of Arc’s own birth on the Epiphany – JAN 6

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January 6 marked the second-oldest Christian feast day after Easter. Also known as ‘Little Christmas,’ the Feast of the Epiphany is a day of religious observance for many Christians around the world.

Joan of Arc’s birth was not officially recorded in the small town where she was born however the people of her town remembered that she was born on Epiphany, or Twelfth-night, which is January 6. The Epiphany celebrates the revelation of God in human form in the person of Jesus Christ and part of the celebration commemorates the arrival of the three “Wise Men” who were led to the baby Jesus by a star in the sky above Bethlehem. It is very significant that Saint Joan was born on Epiphany because she not only led her people to freedom in this world but she ultimately led them, and generations since, to the true freedom that is only found through Jesus Christ.

Saint Joan of Arc is truly a “brilliantly shining light” of the Kingdom of Heaven and will forever point the way to God. (Read Ben D. Kennedy’s paper “Saint Joan of Arc: A Brilliantly Shining Light of God” written to celebrate Joan’s 600th birthday)

“It was during the night of the Epiphany of Our Lord (January 6, Twelfth Night), when men are wont most joyfully to recall the acts of Christ that she first saw the light in this mortal life. And, wonderful to relate, the poor inhabitants of the place were seized with an inconceivable joy. And though ignorant of the birth of the Maid, they rushed hither and thither in search of what might be the new event. Their hearts as one were conscious of a new gladness.” –Lord Perceval de Boulainvilliers, writing to the Duke of Milan in 1429 about Joan’s birth.

Saint Joan was born in Domremy, a little village in a part of Eastern France known as Lorraine.

At her trial of rehabilitation several of the people from Domremy remembered her birth and childhood in the following ways:

“From my childhood I knew Joan the Maid who was born at Domremy to Jacques d’Arc and Isabelle, husband and wife, honest and decent farmers and true Catholics of good repute. I know this because I was often in company with Joan, and being her friend I went to her father’s house. . . .Joan was a good, simple and sweet-natured girl, she went often and of her own will to church and the sacred places and often she was ashamed because of people remarking how she went so devoutly to church. I have heard the priest who was there in her time say that she often came to confession. Joan busied herself like any other girl; she did the housework and spun and sometimes, I have seen her, she kept her father’s flocks.” Hauviette – childhood friend of Joan READ MORE

joankneelingprayerI have spoken before about the many spiritual lessons I have learned from St. Joan of Arc but one that is very dear to me is how I learned to more fully celebrate Christmas because of St. Joan’s own birth on the Epiphany. Like many Christians at Christmas I had focused primarily on Christmas day without understanding that the full celebration lasts until Twelfth-night or the Epiphany.

The reason the Epiphany is so important is because that is when we celebrate the actual revelation of God to man in human form in the person of Jesus Christ.

It is on this day that the three wise men following the star in the sky arrived in Bethlehem and found the baby Jesus which completed the revelation to the world that the savior to mankind had been born. One of the most detailed descriptions I have ever seen about the full story of the birth of Christ including the Epiphany is contained in the first 59 pages of the famous novel Ben Hur and I would encourage anyone wanting a more complete understanding of the full Christmas story to read these pages as I have now begun doing every year to celebrate Christmas.

You can find this book online HERE.

And to better understand about the significance of St. Joan of Arc’s own birth on the Epiphany I would recommend reading a paper I wrote two years ago to celebrate her 600th birthday titled: Saint Joan of Arc: A Brilliantly Shining Light of God – The Significance of Joan of Arc’s Birth on the Epiphany

Thank you once again St. Joan, for teaching me more about the great God that you love and serve so well as one of His Saints.

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