The Feast of the Transfiguration, August 6, is considered a major feast day in the life of the Church, and, when it falls on a Sunday, supersedes the Sunday After Pentecost readings.
It is a day for awe and amazement. The first reading tells of Moses encounter with God on the mountaintop, the receiving of what we know as the Ten Commandments, and how Moses returned from his encounters with God his face was glowing white. He was so bright that we are told he covered his face with a veil.
The Gospel for this day is from Luke 9:28-36.
It was just another ordinary day in the life of the disciples: listen to Jesus teach, heal a few people, maybe witness a miracle or two, spend some time in prayer and discussion – just an ordinary day. It was no surprise when Jesus went off to pray by himself, and no surprise that he took Peter and James and John. No surprise at all. But what happened on that mountain was a surprise, and a game changer for all of them, and for all generations to follow. Jesus was transfigured before their very eyes, changed as they looked on.
He became transfigured, all in white, glistening, and accompanied by Moses and Elijah, the long dead prophets and holy men. The disciples were amazed, and frightened, and suddenly aware of the larger dimension of Jesus life and ministry among them; suddenly seeing him in his true nature as fully human and fully divine. Peter wanted to capture the moment by building shrines, but the voice they heard told them to do something different: to listen to Jesus, which meant following him, doing what he taught them to do, and to later continue the work he had begun with them.
Heal the sick, feed the hungry, comfort the afflicted, and share the Good News. It is the same for us who follow Jesus in our own time: Heal the sick, feed the hungry, comfort the afflicted, and share the Good News.
And in it all, recognize this Jesus in all his Glory as the Christ, the well-beloved Son of God. Totally awesome!
Let us pray:
O God, who on the holy mount revealed to chosen witnesses your well-beloved Son, wonderfully transfigured, in raiment white and glistening: Mercifully grant that we, being delivered from the disquietude of this world, may by faith behold the King in his beauty; who with you, O Father, and you, O Holy Spirit, lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Peace and blessing,