This started out as a roundup Epiphany posts, but when I discovered the ever practical Madonna House tradition to explore more thoroughly
First, Pope Benedict XVI’s 2008 Epiphany homily. (As of this writing, I haven’t found his 2010 homily online yet. Update: I was obviously not awake this morning. The real date of Epiphany is January 6 – yet another reason to dislike the practice of transferring feast days.)
Ignatius press reprints Sandra Miesel’s Wise Men from the East.
A widespread tradition on Epiphany is the blessing of door lintels. There’s an interesting explanation in a pamphlet published by Madonna called Celebrating Epiphany. Another tradition is what Madonna House calls their “Epiphany coffee cake,” better known in other areas as King Cake.
Hidden inside the cake are three objects (coins, nuts, or plastic figures, etc). The three people who find the objects then offer a prayer for the family. From the Madonna House pamphlet:
Then sometime during the day each of these privileged persons will pray some special prayer for the whole family, perhaps the rosary or simply the Lord’s prayer. At Madonna House each of the three persons spends an hour in adoration before the Blessed Sacrament, since adoration is a keynote of the Epiphany feast: the Magi came to adore Christ.
Both traditions sound like they would be easy for a family to adopt.