The Transfiguration of our Lord
OUR divine Redeemer, being in Galilee about a year before His sacred Passion, took with Him St. Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, Sts. James and John, and led them to a retired mountain. Tradition assures us that this was Mount Thabor, which is exceedingly high and beautiful, and was anciently covered with green trees and shrubs, and was very fruitful. It rises something like a sugar-loaf, in a vast plain in the middle of Galilee. This was the place in which the Man-God appeared in His glory. Whilst Jesus prayed, He suffered that glory which was always due to His sacred humility, and of which, for our sake, He deprived it, to diffuse a ray over His whole body. His face was altered and shone as the sun, and His garments became white as snow. Moses and Elias were seen by the three apostles in His company on this occasion, and were heard discoursing with Him of the death which He was to suffer in Jerusalem. The three apostles were wonderfully delighted with this glorious vision, and St. Peter cried out to Christ, "Lord, it is good for us to be here. Let us make three tents: one for Thee, one for Moses, and one for Elias" Whilst St. Peter was speaking, there came, on a sudden, a bright shining cloud from heaven, an emblem of the presence of God's majesty, and from out of this cloud was heard a voice which said, "This is My beloved Son, in Whom I am well pleased; hear ye Him" The apostles that were present, upon hearing this voice, were seized with a sudden fear, and fell upon the ground; but Jesus, going to them, touched them, and bade them to rise. They immediately did so, and saw no one but Jesus standing in his ordinary state. This vision happened in the night. As they went down the mountain early the next morning, Jesus bade them not to tell any one what they had seen till He should be risen from the dead.
Reflection. —From the contemplation of this glorious mystery we ought to conceive a true idea of future happiness; if this once possess our souls, we will think nothing of any difficulties or labors we can meet with here, but regard with great indifference all the goods and evils of this life, provided we can but secure our portion in the kingdom of God's glory.
Lives Of The Saints By Alban Butler, Benziger Bros. Edition www.globalgrey.co.uk
Prayers and Reading for Today’s MASS
Introit • Ps. 76, 19
Thy lightnings enlightened the world: the earth shook and trembled. Ps. 83, 2, 3. How lovely are Thy tabernacles, O Lord of hosts! my soul longeth and fainteth for the courts of the Lord. Glory be …
O God, Who in the glorious transfiguration of Thine only-begotten Son didst strengthen the sacraments of faith by the testimony of the fathers, and Who didst wonderfully foreshow the perfect adoption of Thy children by a voice coming down in a shining cloud, mercifully grant that we be made co-heirs of the King of glory Himself, and grant us to be sharers in that very glory. Through the same.
Epistle • 2 Peter 1, 16-19
Lesson from the Epistle of blessed Paul the Apostle.
[He exhorts them to join all other virtues with their faith, in order to secure their salvation.]
Dearly beloved, we have not by following artificial fables, made known to you the power, and presence of our Lord Jesus Christ; but we were eyewitnesses of his greatness. For he received from God the Father, honour and glory: this voice coming down to him from the excellent glory: This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him. And this voice we heard brought from heaven, when we were with him in the holy mount. And we have the more firm prophetical word: whereunto you do well to attend, as to a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts.
Gradual • Ps. 44, 3, 2
Thou art beautiful above the sons of men: grace is poured abroad in Thy lips. My heart hath uttered a good word. I speak my works to the King.Alleluia, alleluia. Wis. 7, 26. He is the brightness of eternal light, the unspotted mirror, and the image of His goodness. Alleluia.
Gospel • Matt. 17, 1-9
Continuation of the Holy Gospel According to St. Matthew.
[The Transfiguration of Christ: He cures the lunatic child: foretells his passion; and pays the didrachma.]
At that time, Jesus took Peter and James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up into a high mountain apart: And he was transfigured before them. And his face did shine as the sun: and his garments became white as snow. And behold there appeared to them Moses and Elias talking with him. And Peter answering, said to Jesus: Lord, it is good for us to be here: if thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles, one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias. And as he was yet speaking, behold a bright cloud overshadowed them. And lo, a voice out of the cloud, saying: This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased: hear ye him.
And the disciples hearing, fell upon their face, and were very much afraid. And Jesus came and touched them: and said to them, Arise, and fear not. And they lifting up their eyes saw no one but only Jesus. And as they came down from the mountain, Jesus charged them, saying: Tell the vision to no man, till the Son of man be risen from the dead.
Offertory • Ps. 111, 3
Glory and wealth are His house: and His justice remaineth forever and ever. Alleluia.
Sanctify, we beseech Thee, O Lord, the gifts offered on the glorious transfiguration of Thine only-begotten Son, and by the splendors of that very illumination cleanse us from the stains of our sins. Through the same.
Communion • Matt. 17, 9
Tell the vision you have seen to no man, till the Son of man be risen from the dead.
Grant, we beseech Thee, O almighty God, that with the understanding of a purified mind we may follow those sacred mysteries of Thy Son’s transfiguration which we celebrate with our solemn office. Through the same.