We too are called to be transfigured for Christ, with Christ and in Christ
WE ALSO ARE CALLED TO BE TRANSFIGURED FOR CHRIST, WITH CHRIST AND IN CHRIST
Since baptism the Eternal Father has also placed his pleasure on us, because in Baptism we have become children of God by adoption. Let us therefore rediscover our Baptism as a way of Transfiguration. Because becoming saints means becoming ever brighter, of a taller and greater beauty. A beauty that is a reference to the very life of the Trinity.
Dear Readers of The Island of Patmos,
I remember a long trip to the mountains a few years ago, on the heights of Bolzano. A long climb, between cold and hot, between equipment and a water bottle, to reach the top and contemplate all the beauty of creation. A long journey in stages, to find contemplation and beauty.
Transfiguration of Christ, Raphael Sanzio, Pinacoteca of the Vatican Museums
The Today's Gospel it is similar to this path and can be divided into two major stages. First of all, the journey up to Mount Tabor. Pietro, James and John are led with Jesus. Immediately Moses and Elijah appear. Because these characters are present and not all the Apostles? We see. Conceivably Jesus brings with him three important figures: his future vicar, Pietro; the great contemplative of his divine mysteries, Giovanni; the attentive apostle of Charity, Giacomo. At the same time, Moses, he is the one who represents the Ten Commandments and with them the validity and importance of the Law. In the end, Elia, the prophet par excellence. So, prophecy must be perceived as a fundamental element for understanding Jesus.
This Lent Jesus also takes us up the mountain, remembering these things: the identity of Catholics who walk with Peter in the authority of faith, with John in meditation and reflections on the Gospel and the Bible, with Giacomo in the more concrete love of Charity which makes faith and meditation the seed of every action, of tenderness and mercy towards one's neighbor. This will make us true prophets and heralds of Jesus, without losing anything of the Law that the Lord did not want to change [cf.. Mt 5, 17]
At that point Jesus is transfigured, his face shines like the sun and his clothes become shiny. Wear the color of white, which biblically indicates the divine presence. This sparkling whiteness is a sign that Jesus wants to confirm the presence of God among them. All of this is definitively confirmed by the second part of the text. Suddenly a cloud envelops them, and the Father confirms «yes it's him, my child, my pleasure, they say». Again another element that wants to show the invisible: Cloud, for the Jews, a sign of God's presence in the desert, His voice. Jesus is the Son of God. This tremendous and fascinating experience is the experience of intimacy in prayer with God. That strong intimacy that occurs in the prayer of contemplation, when we can really taste and internalize everything we believe.
Lent offers itself as a time for rediscovery of this prayer so strong and so intense: being face to face with God, to learn to grow in love. A walk in daily prayer, built on small and big moments, alternating with the Sacraments, in which we too can discover the face of the Transfigured Jesus, preparing for the days of the Passion. To all become transfigured in Him, for him, with him.
Since baptism the Eternal Father he has placed his pleasure on us also, because in Baptism we have become children of God by adoption. Let us therefore rediscover our Baptism as a way of Transfiguration. Because becoming saints means becoming ever brighter, of a taller and greater beauty. A beauty that is a reference to the very life of the Trinity.
We ask the Lord the grace and strength to climb our existential and spiritual Mount Tabor, climbing up the unevenness and difficulties of the journey and always shaking the hand of Jesus, for its beauty to shine in the face of all of us and we will all shine like the sun.
Santa Maria Novella in Florence, 5 March 2023
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