The Significance of the Twelfth Day in the United States
Epiphany, also known as the “Three Kings Day” or the “Twelfth Day” has a huge significance in Christianity. It falls exactly on the 12th day after Christmas, on the 6th of January, hence it has been popularly christened as the Twelfth Day.
As the Biblical version goes, it was on the 12th day that the three wise men visited baby Jesus. On this very day, Jesus was baptized as per the Christian norms by John the Baptist. The event is celebrated to commemorate the two major events that strikingly set themselves apart as well as the miracle wedding at Cana, Galilee. As per the historical events, the Christians had set the date 6th of January on which the Twelfth Day would be observed.
You will find this tradition observed mainly in the eastern Christian churches. It is more of a traditional observance than a federal holiday. Ancient Christian Churches the world over, specifically in Europe and America, honor this day with a wide range of celebrations and activities.
How it’s celebrated?
There are many traditions surrounding the celebration of this festival, and it completely varies in accordance with the culture in which it is being observed. One of the many customs include Star Singers who dress themselves as kings and while holding a large star sing carols and collect money for charity. They also observe the plundering of Christmas trees as part of the celebration.
In French culture, Epiphany is also the beginning of the Mardi Gras, which is yet another major celebration for Christians.
Some cultures also observe sprinkling of holy water along with burning of some impressive herbs as part of the Epiphany celebration. This is more on the superstition side than anything else, and should be avoided. One should observe this festival more to glorify the name of Christ.