St. George
Serbian Orthodox Church
Carmichaels, PA

The Transfiguration of Our Lord Jesus Christ

2004

by Fr. Rodney Torbic


Matthew 17:1-9

Now after six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, led them up on a high mountain by themselves; and He was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and His clothes became as white as the light. And behold Moses and Elijah appeared to them, talking with Him. Then Peter answered and said to Jesus, "Lord, it is good for us to be here; if You wish, let us make here three tabernacles: one for You, one for Moses, and one for Elijah." While he was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them; and suddenly a voice came out of the cloud, saying, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Hear Him!" And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their faces and were greatly afraid. But Jesus came and touched them and said, "Arise, and do not be afraid." When they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no one but Jesus only. Now as they came down from the mountain, Jesus commanded them, saying, "Tell the vision to no one until the Son of Man is risen from the dead."

Christ offers each person the opportunity to be transfigured, to share in the light of Christ. Christ offers each person the opportunity to be united with Him as we partake of His precious Body and Blood.

The Holy Liturgy summons believers to draw near in the fear of God and with faith. The Holy Liturgy is where believers partake of Christ's precious Body and Blood.

The mountains of God summon the believer. The mountains of God challenge the believer. The mountains of God inspire the believer.

Each year the Feast of Transfiguration is celebrated. Each year believers must come to terms with the Transfigured Christ. Each year the lives of believers change due to the Transfiguration of Christ.

The Holy Gospel tells us about Christ upon Mt. Tabor. The Holy Gospel tells us of the presence of Peter, James and John. The Holy Gospel depicts the presence of Moses and Elijah.

The minds of believers are transformed by the Transfiguration. The minds of believers cannot fully comprehend the Transfiguration. The minds of believers are never the same after learning of the Transfiguration.

The loving God enables believers to learn of the Transfiguration. The forgiving God enables sinners to draw near to the Transfigured Christ. The charitable God offers His Son.

At the Transfiguration Peter said: "Lord, it is good for us to be here." At each Feast of the Transfiguration, we can say to the Lord God, it is good for us to be here.

Wherever we are located on the Feast of the Transfiguration, we can give thanks to God. We can pray to God. We can think about God.

Some years ago, two travelling Orthodox clergymen used an airport chapel for simple prayer on the Feast of Transfiguration. Time and distance prevented access to an Orthodox Church. The lives of these clergymen were affected as were the lives of other travelers coming to use the chapel.

Believers near to Orthodox churches have a responsibility to attend the Divine Liturgy on the Feast if they can. Men and women and children travelling... men, women and children far from Orthodox Churches benefit by taking time to pray to God on the Feast of Transfiguration.

The goodness of God exceeds our ability to comprehend. We express our appreciation for the goodness of God by loving God and loving our neighbor. May the Transfigured Lord transform our hearts that we may always live in His light.

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