Hallo again to all.
The end of Christmastide is upon us. Twelfth Night and Epiphany are this week, although there is some dispute as to whether Twelfth Night is the 5th or 6th of January; this article in The Telegraph (London) explains the dilemma.
A thousand years ago, the celebration of Three Kings Day and Twelfth Night was as important, if not more so, than Christmas Day itself. If your parish doesn't make a big deal out of Twelfth Night, you should try visiting one that does, so that you can find out what it's all about. It's only in modern times, alas, that Twelfth Night has been reclaimed for worship. Some historians believe that the Twelfth Night celebrations derive from those of the earlier Feast of Fools, and by Shakespeare's time, Twelfth Night celebrations were firmly associated by the public with merrymaking and not with worship.
But any occasion can be an occasion for worship, if approached and handled properly. Anglican parishes around the world are increasingly putting Twelfth-Night gatherings on the worship calendar. Share a meal, re-enact a mediæval Herod play, then process to the nave for a brief eucharist. Be worshipful, and God will be with you.
If your parish doesn't pay attention to Twelfth Night, what can you do?
'A flat round cake of variable size. The galette probably dates back to the Neolithic era, when thick cereal pastes were cooked by spreading them out on hot stones. In ancient times, people made galettes from oats, wheat, rye, and even barley, sweetened with honey. Then came the hearth cakes of the Middle Ages and all of the regional varieties: the galette of Corèze (made with walnuts and chestnuts), the galette of Roussillon (made with candied fruits), the marzipan galette of the Nivernais, the curd-cheese galette of the Jura, the puff-pastry galette of Normandy, filled with jam and fresh cream, the famous galette of Perugia (a delicate yeasted pastry, like brioche, flavoured with lemon zest and topped with butter and sugar).'
During the French Revolution the galette des rois was briefly renamed gâteau de l’égalité. Made properly, it has baked into it an object such as a coin or a bean or a carved wooden baby Jesus. Whomever is served the piece of the galette that contains that object becomes the King or Queen of the Twelfth Night celebration; in mediæval tradition that person then chose a mate for the evening (to be the Queen or King) by dropping it in their glass.
Here's how to make your own Kings' Cake. You know it can't be hard (even though this recipe is from Auguste Escoffier) because, as Escoffier points out, the cake dates back to the Neolithic era.
This is Anglicans Online's 15th anniversary issue. We'll go have a cup of strong coffee to celebrate, and see you next week.
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