Transfiguration

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Deuteronomy 7:9-14, Psalm 97, 2 Peter 1:16-19, Mark 9:2-10

The word “transfiguration” comes from Latin roots: trans– (“across”) and figura (“form, shape”). It thus signifies a change of form or appearance.

This is what happened to Jesus in the event known as the Transfiguration: His appearance changed and became glorious.

The important question to reflect upon today is, what does the Transfiguration of Jesus mean to each of us? It means that we are all invited to share in this mystical experience.

The path up the mountain proceeds through prayer and encounter. Praying is the fuel of our Christian lives. Without prayer, we are nothing. We can never dream of getting to Heaven without prayer.

On encountering the transfigured Jesus, it was revealed before mortal eyes the Transcendent Truth of who He is — and who Peter, James and John — and each one of us — will become in Him. They were invited to exercise their freedom and embrace the path that He had prepared. So are we, right now.

At certain times in our lives, God may give us supernatural experiences of His Grace that strengthens our faith.

We should welcome these experiences for the graces they are, but we should not expect them to continue indefinitely, nor should we be afraid or resentful when they cease. Don’t forget, the essence of the Transfiguration was a temporary event meant to inspire and strengthen the Apostles’ faith.

This was why poor Peter was rebuked when he offered to build booths for Jesus, Moses and Elijah — he wanted to stay on that mountain!

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Originally posted on Instagram.
Image: Transfiguration, Raphael (1516–20) / PD-US

Noel Ethan Tan

Noel Ethan Tan

Noel is a Singaporean working as a rehabilitation counsellor at ACC(S) Psychiatric Rehabilitation Centre. He is currently doing a part-time Masters Program in Counselling and Guidance at NTU, Singapore. In his church ministry, Noel is currently serving in a young adults' Catholic community called Anawim that does Bible Exegesis. Noel is also pursuing a Certificate in Theology at the Catholic Theological Institute of Singapore. His favorite Bible verse is 1 Peter 3:15 — “In your hearts, reverence Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to make a defense to any who calls you to account for the hope that is in you, but do it with gentleness and reverence.”

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