Homily (Reflection) for the Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord (6th August, 2016) on the Gospel and the Feast

Dan 7:9-10.13-14;
Ps 96:1-2.5-6.9. (R. vv. 1.9);
2Pt 1:16-19;
Lk 9:28-36.

The bible gives account of the Transfiguration of the Lord on the mountain, cf. Matt 17:1-8; Mk 9:2-8; Lk 9:28-36; 2Pt 1:16-18. In all the synoptic gospels, this took place shortly after Jesus first foretold His Passion, death, and resurrection. According to Tradition, this took place on Mount Tabor. This feast started in the East about fourth century and four centuries later, it spread to the West. Pope Callixtus III elevated the Transfiguration of the Lord to a Feast and extended it to the universal Church. He established 6th August, the day the news of the defeat of the Turks at Belgrade by the Crusaders on 22nd July, 1456 reached Rome for its celebration. It also coincided with the day the first church that was built there in the fourth century was dedicated.

Topic: After the Baptism.

About eight days after Jesus foretold His Passion and death, He took with Him Peter, James, and John up on the mountain to pray. The appearance of His face changed, and His clothes became dazzling white while praying. Moses and Elijah appeared and discussed with Jesus on His Passion and death. Peter said to Jesus while they were about leaving, “Master, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah”. A cloud overshadowed them and a voice came from the cloud saying, “This is my Son, my Chosen; listen to him!”

Although Jesus and the duo discussed about His Passion and death, Peter never rebuked instead he wanted to remain there because of the glimpse of Christ’s glory. This is in line with the quotation, “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man conceived, what God has prepared for those who love him” (1Cor 2:9).

Earlier when Jesus was baptized, a voice came, “You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased” (Lk 3:22; cf. Mat 3:17; Mk 1:11). Therefore, what was said about Him when He was baptized was also said at the climax of His public ministry.

At baptism, our sins were completely washed away, cf. Acts 22:16; Gal 3:27; 1Pt 3:21. We are born again as sons and daughters of God, cf. 2Cor 6:18; 1Cor 12:13. We were raised from death by the glory of the Father at baptism for us to walk in newness of life, cf. Rom 6:4; Col 2:12. The issue is the state we are now after the Baptism. What is in heaven cannot be compared with whatever that distracts us here on earth.

Bible Reading: Rom 6:1-13; Col 2:6-19.

Thought for today: Are you still God’s chosen one?

Let us pray: Lord, restore us to the state we were when baptized – Amen.

Our Lord Jesus Christ – Have mercy on us!

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