Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord – 6 August – Today’s Gospel: Mark 9:2-10

Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord – 6 August – Today’s Gospel:  Mark 9:2-10

All three Synoptic Gospels tell the story of the Transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-8; Mark 9:2-9; Luke 9:28-36).   With remarkable agreement, all three place the event shortly after Peter’s confession of faith that Jesus is the Messiah and Jesus’ first prediction of his passion and death.   Peter’s eagerness to erect tents or booths on the spot suggests it occurred during the week-long Jewish Feast of Booths in the fall.Tullow_Church_of_the_Most_Holy_Rosary_South_Transept_Window_Mysteries_of_Light_and_Pope_John_Paul_II_Detail_Transfiguration_2013_09_06

According to Scripture scholars, in spite of the texts’ agreement it is difficult to reconstruct the disciples’ experience, because the Gospels draw heavily on Old Testament descriptions of the Sinai encounter with God and prophetic visions of the Son of Man.   Certainly Peter, James and John had a glimpse of Jesus’ divinity strong enough to strike fear into their hearts.   Such an experience defies description, so they drew on familiar religious language to describe it.   And certainly, Jesus warned them, that His glory and His suffering were to be inextricably connected—a theme John highlights throughout his Gospel.Transfiguration

Tradition names Mount Tabor as the site of the revelation.   A church first raised there in the fourth century was dedicated on 6 August.   A feast in honour of the Transfiguration was celebrated in the Eastern Church from about that time.   Western observance began in some localities about the eighth century.the-transfiguration.Pietro Perugino

On 22 July 1456, Crusaders defeated the Turks at Belgrade.   News of the victory reached Rome on 6 August and Pope Callistus III placed the feast on the Roman calendar the following year.

One of the Transfiguration accounts is read on the second Sunday of Lent each year, proclaiming Christ’s divinity to the Elect and baptised alike.   The Gospel for the first Sunday of Lent, by contrast, is the story of the temptation in the desert—affirmation of Jesus’ humanity.

More here: 2transfiguration in art


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