What happened on that mountain of the Transfiguration was an explosion of unearthly, “unborrowed” light that shone around and from within Jesus.
The Transfiguration was, and is, a moment of challenge and promise to the Apostles and to us. On that mountain, they glimpsed the divinity of Jesus. They realized then and there that Jesus was more than a great teacher, more than a reformer, more than a healer; Jesus was the Son of God. The voice of the Father said:” This is my beloved Son. Listen to Him.” That means that Jesus’ teaching is God’s teaching and Jesus’ forgiveness is God’s forgiveness. That is why the Church was so careful to preserve the words and gestures of Jesus in the Gospels and the teachings of His Apostles in the rest of the New Testament. We don’t have to wonder what God wants of us because it is all clear in the Gospel.
There is a tendency today for people to give greater study to “private revelations” than to the clear teachings of Jesus in the Gospels. When we read the Gospels, we aren’t simply reading a transcript of what happened in history. We are reading God’s message to us.
That is why every detail in the Gospel accounts and all the teachings in the New Testament have been preserved through the Holy Spirit and are proclaimed each Sunday. They have been treasured by the Church and should be treasured by us as the definitive and final revelation of God’s will that is the sure guide to salvation for everyone. “This is my beloved Son. Listen to Him.”
The Transfiguration is also a moment of promise. It was a kind of “fast forward” for the Apostles to show them what is beyond Good Friday to strengthen them for the trial of Jesus’ crucifixion and death. It is also a promise of what awaits every follower of Jesus. The glory we see in Jesus will one day be ours.
We sell ourselves very short, we under price ourselves. Our full glory is ahead of us with Christ. All the limitations of this life will be gone; all the misunderstandings will be left behind; the glory of Christ is ahead of us.
Our future is not a grave but eternal life. The promise of Christ’s Transfiguration is the promise of a greater world and a greater life that is our real future. We should not set our sights on too small of a screen. When we die, we don’t evaporate into the ozone. We go into the arms of Christ who knows the real truth about each of us. There are seven words in this Gospel reading that give great peace and great hope. They are both sublime and plain. They can enormously simplify and strengthen our spiritual life. They are the words of the Father to the Apostles and to us:
“This is my beloved Son. Listen to Him.”
Monday Rolling Cabbage @ 8 am
Tuesday Making Kibbi Aras @ 8 am
Rolling Grape Leaves Schedule:
Sunday August 21st, Sunday August 28th, and Sunday September 11th. Also, Thursday August 18th from 4pm-7pm (before the festival meeting). We are five weeks away from the festival and all help is greatly appreciated.
Wow! We had another big day on Wednesday August 3rd. Thank you to everyone who works so hard to keep the kitchen going and making it a success.
If you would like to volunteer, the kitchen would love to have you. We are preparing for the festival and Wednesday lunches. Please contact Denise Seifert, Kathleen Wahby, or Gina Fanetti. All are welcome and invited to help in the kitchen!
Parish Finances July 31st-August 7th
Saturday July 30th Liturgy: $190.00
Sunday July 31st Liturgy: $2,948.00
Revenue during the week: $350.00
Maintenance and Repair: $10.00 (Counted in Sat and Sun totals)
Coffee Hour: $120.00
MYO Bake Sale
The MYO will be hosting coffee hour on Sunday August 14th and will also be having a bake sale. All are invited to join coffee hour and support the bake sale for the MYO. The MYO is open to the youth of our parish ages 12-18. It is a great way to get involved with your parish and meet other youth your age.
Included in the bulletin is a list of donations for the festival. Here is a list of booths that are in need of items:
Dessert booth– cakes, cupcakes, brownies, cookies, pies, etc.
Spin to Win booth-Home accents
Chorbishop Beggiani’s book, “Early Syraic Theology” discussed a number early theological views written by St. Ephrem (307 – 363AD), Jacob of Serugh (451 – 521AD) and Araphate (280-345AD). These men traveled throughout the ancient world from Mesopotamia to Judea and into Northern Syria. Many of their writings, homilies and letters become the basis of the Catholic doctrine on worship, their ideas had a great influence on many of the Eastern Rite Churches, including the Maronite Rite Church.
One concept discussed in “Early Syraic Theology” is Divinization; this concept discusses God’s intention for Adam and the effect that the Original Sin had upon the plan that God had for all.
Jacob of Serugh concludes that humanity was created originally as a kind of double image – as an image of the Son, who is the image of the Father, but also as an image of the Son made man. The humanity of Christ, then, is in a primordial relationship to the human race. Adam is in a special sense the image of God. In Homily 94 Jacob of Serugh explains:
The image of the Son, the only one, he gave to Adam, while he was its creator,
He took it from him when he visited him…
While he was its creator he was related to him who gave him the image…
To his own he came; in his image he dwelt in the daughter of Adam, who was formed in his image and because of this he was related to him. 4
Francis Crawford Burkitt summarizes this doctrine of Apharhat as follows: “Such in the creed of Aphraates. To him Christianity was the revelation of a Divine Spirit dwelling in man and fighting against moral evil, not first and foremost a tissue of philosophical speculation about the nature of Divinity itself.” 5
If you have questions about Catholic teaching or our Maronite tradition, or would like to suggest a topic, please email us or tell us the next time we see you. Thank you and God Bless.