Transfiguration of the Heart

The Transfiguration of the Lord is one of the significant events which happened to Jesus on earth. Other examples are His Birth, His Baptism, His Passion and Death, His Resurrection and Ascension. What is the significance of the Transfiguration?

A bright cloud cast over Jesus and the three apostles, which indicated the presence of the LORD as it did in the Book of Exodus: A cloud covered the tent of meeting, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle. Moses could not enter the tent of meeting, because the cloud settled down upon it and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle. (Exodus 40:34-35) Just as the glory of God was manifested in the cloud in the Book of Exodus, so it was also manifested in the cloud at the Transfiguration.

In addition, God the Father Himself testified that Jesus is His Son; that Jesus is the Son of God: A voice from the cloud said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.” (Matthew 17:5) These were the exact same words heard from a voice from heaven during the baptism of Jesus, except that during the Transfiguration, the command “listen to him” was added. What is the significance of the addition of this command?

The appearance of Moses and Elijah testifies that the law and the prophets are fulfilled in the person of Jesus. As Moses represents the law and Elijah represents the prophets, they serve as witnesses to the fulfillment of the law and the prophets in the person of Jesus. In Luke’s version of the Transfiguration, Moses and Elijah spoke with Jesus of the exodus that He was going to accomplish in Jerusalem (cf. Luke 9:31); this is an important detail supplied by Luke, because it was in His Passion, Death and Resurrection in Jerusalem that Christ would consummate His fulfillment of the law and the prophets. That is also why the Father’s command to listen to Jesus was added in the Transfiguration. Jesus supersedes the law and the prophets; especially as these were interpreted by the scribes and the Pharisees. Now, it is Jesus’ words and His way that the disciples must pay attention to.     

Do we pay attention to Christ? One of the things that Jesus said to His disciples is: “Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for yourselves.” (Matthew 11:29) Instead of taking the yoke of the law, as interpreted by the scribes and the Pharisees, Jesus calls all who are burdened to take the yoke of obedience to His word; if they do that, then they will find rest. We must learn from Jesus to be meek and humble of heart.

Is our relationship with God superficial, giving way to occasional or even habitual profanity or impure thoughts and actions? Are we fair and just only to people that we like, while being critical to those that we don’t like? Do we lie and falsely put the blame on innocent persons in order to hide our own mistakes or the mistakes of someone more important to us? If we have the tendency to do these kinds of things, then now is the time for our hearts to be spiritually transfigured in Christ.

We will have our monthly faith workshop immediately after Mass this morning. The topic will be the “4 senses of Scripture.” Please proceed to the Conference Room immediately after Mass.

Immediately after Mass today, Fr. Bill will administer the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick in the sanctuary.

Attention parents and children: Registration for Sunday School has begun! Classes will resume on August 27, 2023. The schedule of classes is now available. Please pick up a copy in the church foyer, or view it our church website.

Join us for “Family & Friends Day” on September 2. We will begin with Holy Mass at 9:00 AM, followed by fun and educational activities after Mass, and lunch at noon. Lunch is free.

Our church GARAGE SALE will be on Saturday, October 7 from 8:00 AM to 2:00 PM. Please check if you have clothes, household and gift items in good condition to donate. You may bring your donated items to the church beginning in September. Please do not bring large or broken furniture, glass or mirrors, obsolete electronics and office equipment to the church. Thank you for your support!

Prayer List: Andrew Chen, Alexis Lam, Stephen Lam, Liang Chenjing, Pan Bohao, Long Guorui, Rosa Wang and Xu Taicheng.