Remember the glory
Sometimes it seems as if the world will collapse either under a tidal wave of decadence and politically correct totalitarianism or under a tsunami of violent ideology having a guise of religion.
Sometimes in our own lives we can feel as if we are heading helplessly own a road of relentlessly gathering darkness.
Today’s readings for the Feast of the Transfiguration are special blessings for times such as these.
The first reading (Daniel 7:9-10, 13-14) comes from a time of great trouble and darkness for the people of Israel: a time at which one of the great prophets receives a vision of the power and glory of God and of his anointed one: a power and glory that will conquer all darkness and that will never end.
As the visions during the night continued,
I saw: One like a Son of man coming,
on the clouds of heaven;
When he reached the Ancient One
and was presented before him,
The one like a Son of man received dominion,
glory, and kingship;
all peoples, nations, and languages serve him.
His dominion is an everlasting dominion
that shall not be taken away,
his kingship shall not be destroyed.
This vision was a great comfort to the faithful of Israel and it sustained them through all their troubles.
Life was not necessarily easier for the faithful of the early Church. Even their leader, St. Peter the Apostle, suffered many troubles, but as we hear in today's second reading (2 Peter 1:16-19), he had a memory of a far more tangible vision of glory and power that sustained him in all darkness.
We had been eyewitnesses of his majesty.
For he received honor and glory from God the Father
when that unique declaration
came to him from the majestic glory,
“This is my Son, my beloved,
with whom I am well pleased.”
We ourselves heard this voice come from heaven
while we were with him on the holy mountain.
Moreover, we possess the prophetic message
that is altogether reliable.
You will do well to be attentive to it,
as to a lamp shining in a dark place,
until day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.
This vision (recounted in today's Gospel - Luke 9:28b-36) was a great comfort to him and it sustained him through all of his troubles.
And by sharing the memory of this vision and the prophetic message, St. Peter was able to comfort and sustain others.
As human beings, whenever we are in times of emotional or other darkness, it is as if we are looking into a black hole that only gets bigger and deeper and darker.
Today's feast and today's readings remind us to turn our minds to the glimpses of glory that our faith has given us and to ask the Lord to give us still greater glimpses by the grace of the Holy Spirit, so that we may be sustained and so that we may sustain others with that same grace in the name and power of our Lord Jesus Christ.