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For Western Christians, the feast primarily commemorates the coming of the Magi, with only a minor reference to the baptism of Jesus and the miracle at the Wedding at Cana.Eastern churches celebrate the Baptism of Christ in the Jordan.In this event, Christian writers also inferred a revelation to the Children of Israel.John Chrysostom identified the significance of the meeting between the magi and Herod's court: "The star had been hidden from them so that, on finding themselves without their guide, they would have no alternative but to consult the Jews.The reference to "readings" suggests that the Basilides were reading the Gospels.
Another popular hymn, less known culturally as a carol, is "Songs of thankfulness and praise", with words written by Christopher Wordsworth and commonly sung to the tune "St. A carol used as an anthem for Epiphany is "The Three Kings".
In some Churches, the feast of the Epiphany initiates the Epiphany season, also known as Epiphanytide.
In Advent 2000, the Church of England, Mother Church of the Anglican Communion, introduced into its liturgy an optional Epiphany season by approving the Common Worship series of services as an alternative to those in the Book of Common Prayer, which remains the Church's normative liturgy and in which no such liturgical season appears.
(If a year had more than 24 Sundays after Pentecost, up to four unused post-Epiphany Sundays were inserted between the 23rd and the 24th Sunday after Pentecost.) The Encyclopedia of Catholic Devotions and Practices, which has received the imprimatur of John Michael D'Arcy, with reference to Epiphanytide, thus states that "The Epiphany season extends from January 6 to Septuagesima Sunday, and has from one to six Sundays, according to the date of Easter.
White is the color for the octave; green is the liturgical color for the season." Epiphany is celebrated by both the Eastern and Western Churches, but a major difference between them is precisely which events the feast commemorates.
Saint John Cassian says that even in his time (beginning of the 5th century), Egyptian monasteries celebrated the Nativity and the Baptism together on January 6.