There is one thing we must accept: We cannot cling to the light indefinitely
Today’s readings can be found here. Read Fr. Epicoco’s brief reflections on the daily Mass readings, Monday through Saturday, here. For Sunday Mass reading commentary from Fr. Rytel-Andrianik, see here.
The experience of Jesus’ transfiguration on Mount Tabor is hard to understand when seen on its own. But when we compare it to our own experience, it could not be any clearer.
Today’s Gospel refers to those fleeting moments in our lives when we have seen the light –moments that leave an indelible mark. Think, for instance, of a particularly happy time in our childhoods, or the memory of hugging someone we love, or the starry sky on a summer night – moments when everything seemed perfect. These moments of light are our own personal Tabor.
God gives us these moments so that we can recall them in order to move through dark times. This is what he does with Peter, James, and John. He shows them the light of the Transfiguration so that they can then endure the darkness of Gethsemane.
However, there is one thing we must accept: We cannot cling to the light indefinitely:
“‘Rabbi, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah’.” He did not know what to say, for they were terrified. Then a cloud overshadowed them, and from the cloud there came a voice, ‘This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him!’ Suddenly when they looked around, they saw no one with them any more, but only Jesus.”
When the light goes out, it is not true that there is only darkness. We know that Jesus is there. (“Suddenly when they looked around, they saw no one with them any more, but only Jesus”). His Presence alone is enough to illuminate us when it is dark and we feel lost.
Father Luigi Maria Epicoco is a priest of the Aquila Diocese and teaches Philosophy at the Pontifical Lateran University and at the ISSR ‘Fides et ratio,’ Aquila. He dedicates himself to preaching, especially for the formation of laity and religious, giving conferences, retreats and days of recollection. He has authored numerous books and articles. Since 2021, he has served as the Ecclesiastical Assistant in the Vatican Dicastery for Communication and columnist for the Vatican’s daily newspaper L’Osservatore Romano.