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1st reading  Daniel 7,9-10.13-14  from Psalm  96/97  2nd reading.  2Pt 1,16-19  Gospel Mattew 17,1-9

Saint Peter is answering back accusations and criticisms that could be heard since then. He does not openly say it, but we can easily deduce it. Those criticisms are the same that faithful believers can hear everywhere in every moment, about being easily taken in by priests, always ready to make up beautiful stories. The Apostle, not being afraid in the least, thus writes: “When we told you about the power and the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, we were not slavishly repeating cleverly invented myths; no, we had seen his majesty with our own eyes”. He did not have any doubt, but he wants to make sure that we do not have any either. Therefore, in order to keep us steadfast in our belief in Jesus, he does not take as an example those miracles he witnessed, that can be easily questioned, but he refers to an unique event in which Jesus was not even the main character, “this voice from heaven” that a lot of people could hear in a very precise place, “on the holy mountain”. The voice is the same the Evangelists have already told us about: “This is my Son, the Beloved; he enjoys my favour”.

These are the words stamped in the memory of the three disciples who were there at the time, and they kept “working” in their hearts. Having been ordered by Jesus Himself not to tell anything to anybody, that secret sentence kept eating into their hearts, their minds, their eyes. As a matter of fact, the words were accompanied by what they could see with their own eyes. Jesus was transfigured: his appearance was not human any more. His face and even His garments revealed that they were in the presence of God. The certainty to be in a different world altogether was also encouraged by the apparition of the two great prophets from the past, absorbed in conversation with their Master. Both Moses and Elijah had been the great prophets of the Messiah their entire life. Their existence finds its very reason now, in the presence of Jesus on Earth. They have desired and have been waiting for Him, now they can share the joy of His presence as well: it is only natural that the ones who should first enjoy it are the disciples, who can even live with Him.

Peter’s reaction on the spur of the moment was of joy, but of a joy that was manifested in a superficial way. Now, after many years, while writing to his Christian communities, he does not even mention it, because he has more deeply understood the meaning of what they have seen and heard. Jesus “was honoured and glorified by God the Father” in order for us to see and be ready to completely unite ourselves with Him, the crucified and risen, without doubts or vacillations.

Jesus is the Son of God: not only his face is divine, shining of a divine light, also his word has God’s authority. And the God that is reassuring us about it is not like those gods known to men, it is the Father: the One who loves us, knows us, wants to save us. “Listen to him” does not sound like an optional piece of advice only. The Father says so, therefore I will listen to Jesus attentively, and I will make sure that His words will give direction to my life. The entire Scripture is sparkling with the word listen: “Listen then, Israel! Listen, my people! My people would not listen to me! Listen to my voice!”. Now God Himself does not say any more “Listen to me”, “Listen to Him” instead! Our attention will be pinned on Jesus. In order to know God, to obey Him, to adore Him, pray Him, talk to Him, we will always refer to Jesus. He is the Son, He is loved by God, has a place in His heart, He makes possible for us to know and meet Him. The words heard by Joseph in his dreams and by Mary in Nazareth become finally true: He is “God with us”, who saves us from our sins through His presence among us.

Is he experience the three disciples went through just for them, or is there a way for us to have it as well? God can do everything! What is needed is that we will let ourselves to be leaded “up a high mountain by themselves”. We withdraw from the hustle and bustle, from the daily worries, from vanity and noises, in order to join Jesus in prayer, looking at Him attentively. In this way, God will be able to grant us too the gift of the vision witnessed by the three “on the holy mountain”. We will be “transfigured” as well, and we will go back to our daily life completely changed. We will discover that we will not be so easily influenced by the news and the feelings of the people any more, because we will have become more attentive to the essential, what leads to eternal life.

Have you ever tried to retire by yourself in order to see Jesus’ prayer? Not even a single time in your entire life? What are you waiting for? If you already tried it, why do not repeat the experience in order to go through it more consciously and decisively? Jesus will not disappoint you, and the Father’s voice will transform you!