COMMENTARIES FROM THE HEART (By Fr. Anthony Agnes)
Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord, Year A (06.08.2023)
First Reading: Daniel 7:9-10,13-14
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 96(97):1-2,5-6,9
Second Reading: 2 Peter 1:16-19
Gospel: Matthew 17:1-9
Theme: “My Next Transfiguration”
The Transfiguration was a special moment in the life of Jesus and most especially, of his disciples. The disciples had been following Jesus for almost 3 years. At times they accepted that he is the Messiah but at other times too they had doubts about his true identity. At the Transfiguration experience all their doubts and questions about Jesus were answered. The appearance of Moses and Elijah, seen talking with Jesus, was the first confirmation that their own ancestors of the Law and the Prophets have endorsed Jesus and his ministry. The second confirmation (endorsement) was given by God himself when a voice spoke from the clouds saying: “Listen to him”.
Like the disciples, we the new disciples of Jesus also have moments in our life when we are not sure of what God is doing. We sometimes ask ourselves: “Is God is truly by my side?” “Is God aware of what is happening to me?” We all need a transfiguration moment to know the will of God for our lives and that of our families. The account of the Transfiguration gives us three movements we also have to follow as Christians when we want to be sure of God’s presence in our lives.
The first movement: We heard: “Jesus took with him Peter and James and his brother John and led them up a high mountain where they could be alone”. The first movement is to go up and be alone with God. This is prayer. The Mass is our first prayer, our first transfiguration. Every Sunday, we climb the stairs to the entrances of our churches to go and pray. When we climb these stairs it is a sign that we also are climbing our mountain to be with Jesus in the Church which is our new mountain of transfiguration. When you go for Mass know that you are there for your own transfiguration just like the disciples in the Gospel.
The second movement: Peter spoke to Jesus: “‘Lord,’ he said ‘it is wonderful for us to be here”. We also need to speak to Jesus. What is in your heart? Why are you there at Mass? When we go up on this mountain with Jesus, that is, the Mass, we have to put before him our personal needs and desires. That is why at every Mass we have the Prayers of the Faithful (the Universal Prayers). At the moment, and also during the silent parts of the Mass, speak to Jesus in your heart, tell him what you want him to hear. Never go to Mass and return home without saying anything to Jesus. At the Transfiguration Peter spoke, we also have to speak to God. Even if like Peter what we say is not appropriate, God himself with correct us, he will make it appropriate.
The third movement: “From the cloud there came a voice which said, ‘This is my Son, the Beloved; he enjoys my favour. Listen to him.” This movement is the most important, it is the movement by God. God spoke and they are to listen. We come to our mountain of transfiguration to listen to God. Let us make time during Mass especially during the silence after the homily and also after we have received Holy Communion, to listen to the silent voice of God speaking within us. God always speaks but only those who are silent, silent in their hearts, can hear him. He speaks to us in the homily and speaks to us again when we have received his Body and Blood. Let us remember to listen to him.
God gives everyone a transfiguration. Our duty is to respond with the three movements by making time for prayer and Holy Mass, speaking to Him about our concerns, and listening to Him as he speaks back to us. Let us pray for the grace to be closer to Jesus after every participation at Holy Mass which is the new Transfiguration of the Lord.
Praise be Jesus Christ!
My Prayer: Lord God, you love us and gives us the assurance of the presence of your Son in our midst. Grant us the strength to climb our mountains with Him to experience His full splendor. In His name we pray. Amen!
© Ask The Catholic Priest