• Wartakanlah Injil kepada segala makhluk.
    Mrk 16:15

  • 你们往普天下去, 向一切受造物宣传福音
    谷 16:15

  • Everything is possible by the power of the Holy Spirit’s Grace.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • Segala sesuatu menjadi mungkin dalam kekuatan karunia Roh Kudus.
    St. Arnold Janssen

  • 我当传教士不是为主牺牲,而是上主给我的最大恩赐
    圣福若瑟神父

  • Với sức mạnh Ân Huệ của Chúa Thánh Thần, Mọi việc đều có thể được.
    St Arnoldus Janssen

  • Preach the Gospel to the whole creation./Anh em hãy đi khắp tứ phương thiên hạ, loan báo Tin Mừng cho mọi loài thọ tạo
    Mk 16:15

  • There are many different gifts, but it is always the same Spirit.
    1 Cor 12:4

  • And the Word became flesh and lived among us.
    Jn 1:14

  • Let the word of Christ, in all its richness, find a home with you.
    Col 3:16

  • To proclaim the Good News is the first and greatest act of love of neighbour.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • 传扬天国福音是第一且最大的爱近人行动
    圣杨生•爱诺德神父

  • Có nhiều đặc sủng khác nhau, nhưng chỉ có một Thần Khí/
    1 Cor. 14:4

  • 圣言成了血肉,寄居在我们中间
    若 1:14

  • Ada rupa-rupa karunia, tetapi Roh satu
    1 Kor 12:4

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Friday, 04 August 2017 18:23

The Transfiguration of the Lord - 2017

Written by Fr Elmer Ibarra SVD

Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord
Matthew 17:1-9


Fr Elmer Ibarra 150 BestWhenever I have the chance, I watch a movie every now and then. Sometimes there is something at the movies that catches my attention and if I have the time, I’ll go and watch it as my form of stress-reducing recreation.

Almost every time before the movie proper, there are film clips about what kind of movies are coming up in the next week or so. It’s like a sneak peek of what’s next. Not giving away everything but somehow enticing us to come back to the movie house because they have something nice to offer.

Jesus, in today’s gospel, had just told his disciples the he would be arrested, suffer, die and rise on the third day. That must have made Peter, John and James and the other disciples distraught. They would have been tremendously demoralised about this prediction. Are they following the right Messiah? Is he another hoax? Why would he need to die? What would happen to them?

So Jesus went to Mount Tabor with Peter, James and John and showed them something that they would never forget for the rest of their lives. He gave them a “sneak peek” of his “other” nature. Up to now, they had seen Jesus’ human nature. This time, they’ll have the opportunity to see his divine nature.

Transfiguration 2 350So seemingly out of nowhere, his clothes became dazzlingly white and then Moses and Elijah seemed to be talking with Jesus. Peter, James and John must have been overwhelmed by what they saw. Peter in his delight at what he saw, asked if they could just stay there forever and build three booths, one for Jesus, one of Moses and one for Elijah.

We ask ourselves, why did Jesus transfigure? Would this experience help the faith of his disciples?

Firstly, Jesus wanted to let his disciples see that while he is fully human, he is also fully divine. And by showing them his divine nature, he wanted to assure them that he is more than just a human being, that he would be able to overcome all the adverse things that would happen to him.

Secondly, by the disciples seeing Elijah and Moses, this reinforced their belief that Jesus was the fulfilment of the prediction of the prophets and it told them that Jesus was the real thing. He was the one that they were waiting for and he was now proceeding to complete his destiny of dying for our sins and resurrecting after the third day as a sign that he had conquered sin and death.

Now, did this experience help his disciples? We would like to think so and I think it did, but to different degrees. Peter, on his part, succumbed to the pressures of some maidservants and denied Jesus three times. James was one of the disciples who scampered away when Jesus was arrested and we didn’t hear anything from him after that until after the resurrection. For John though, he may have also left Jesus but he was there at his dying moments under the cross with Jesus’ mother.

For us, we may never have been there at the Transfiguration but our encounter with Jesus in his body and blood every Sunday must also have the same effect. Are we being strengthened by his body and blood to be able to overcome the struggles of the journey towards the kingdom of God? Definitely, we will encounter challenges and some of them are quite immense. But the strength that the body and blood of Christ gives us every Sunday hopefully will be an immense help in persevering our Christian life.