ANNOUNCING A NOVENA
in Honour of
the Transfiguration of our Lord
BEGINNING – 28 JULY
The Revelation of Christ’s Divine Glory
The feast of the Transfiguration of Our Lord Jesus Christ celebrates the revelation of Christ’s divine glory on Mount Tabor in Galilee (Matthew 17:1-6; Mark 9:1-8; Luke 9:28-36). After revealing to His disciples that He would be put to death in Jerusalem (Matthew 16:21), Christ, along with Saints Peter, James, and John, went up the mountain. There, Saint Matthew writes, “he was transfigured before them.
And his face did shine as the sun: and his garments became white as snow.”
QUICK FACTS ABOUT THE FEAST OF THE TRANSFIGURATION
Date: 6 August
THE HISTORY OF THE FEAST OF THE TRANSFIGURATION
The brightness with which He shone on Mount Tabor was not something added to Christ but the manifestation of His true divine nature and a forecast of His Resurrection. For Peter, James and John, it was also a glimpse of the glories of Heaven and of the resurrected body promised to all Christians.
When Christ was transfigured, two others appeared with Him: Moses, representing the Old Testament Law, and Elijah, representing the prophets. Thus Christ, Who stood between the two and spoke with them, appeared to the disciples as the fulfillment of both the Law and the prophets.
At Christ’s baptism in the Jordan, the voice of God the Father was heard to proclaim that “This is my beloved Son” (Matthew 3:17). During the Transfiguration, God the Father pronounced the same words (Matthew 17:5).
Despite the importance of this event, the Feast of the Transfiguration was not among the earliest of feasts celebrated by Christians. It was first celebrated in Asia starting in the fourth or fifth century and spread throughout the Christian East in the centuries following. The Catholic Encyclopedia notes that it wasn’t commonly celebrated in the West until the tenth century. Pope Callixtus III elevated the Transfiguration to a feast of the universal Church and established August 6 as the date of its celebration.
The Novena is often prayed as a Community after Benediction for 9 days, however, if our parish is not offering this Novena, we too can pray it on our own, to assist in preparing for this great revelation of our Lord and to help us obtain the great realisation and joy which Peter, James and John experienced.
Let us Pray!