The Sundays after Epiphany are known as ordinary time, which is easily given to the notion that nothing much is going on then. In fact, ordinary time is so designated, because these Sundays are numbered (from the Latin “ordinalis”). These Sundays after Epiphany are ordinary time which occurs outside of the seasons of Advent, Christmas, Lent, and Easter. Ordinary time continues for the second half of the liturgical year, the Sundays after Pentecost.
During ordinary time, there are no major festivals. But ordinary time is interrupted by lesser feasts including the Transfiguration of our Lord (the last Sunday before Lent begins), certain saints’ days, and, notably for Lutherans, the Reformation and All Saints feast days. On these ordinary or green Sundays, we, typically, read sequentially through the major gospel of the year (this year it’s Luke). But, John’s gospel interrupts from time to time as it does on the 2nd Sunday after the Epiphany with the wedding at Cana narrative.
Because the color for Sundays in ordinary time is green, the paraments and vestments signal that this is a time of growth in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. The Church through the ages is not so pedestrian or driven by the spirit of this age as to give a how-to series on being married or managing resources or all those other catchy-kitschy things that anxious preachers use to try to draw a crowd. Rather, by listening clearly to the Lord Jesus, the living Word of God, speaking through the gospel (and other!) readings, disciples reflect on what that Word means for the various vocations in life including being married or managers of God’s resources.
If you are hungering and thirsting to go more deeply into God’s Word and indeed to receive God’s Word at His Table every week, then we invite you to worship with us at the Evangelical Lutheran Church of St. Matthew in Wilmington. And…may you indeed grow more deeply as the Holy Trinity gets His eternal life and love into you!
Thanks for stopping by!
Pastor Sam Zumwalt+