Sunday 05 March 2023 – 2ND SUNDAY OF LENT         – From Former Life to a New Life

1st Reading: Gen 12:1-4a

The Lord said to Abram: “Go forth from the land of your kinsfolk and from your father’s house to a land that I will show you.  “I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you; I will make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you and curse those who curse you. All the communities of the earth shall find blessing in you.” Abram went as the Lord directed him.  

2nd Reading: 2Tim 1:8b-10  

Beloved: Bear your share of hardship for the gospel with the strength that comes from God.  He saved us and called us to a holy life, not according to our works but according to his own design and the grace bestowed on us in Christ Jesus before time began, but now made manifest through the appearance of our savior Christ Jesus, who destroyed death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. 

Gospel Mt 17:1-9

Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. And he was transfigured before them;      his face shone like the sun and his clothes became white as light. And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, conversing with him. Then Peter said to Jesus in reply, “Lord, it is good that we are here. If you wish, I will make three tents here, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” While he was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud cast a shadow over them,      then from the cloud came a voice that said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.” When the disciples heard this, they fell prostrate and were very much afraid. But Jesus came and touched them, saying, “Rise, and do not be afraid.” And when the disciples raised their eyes, they saw no one else but Jesus alone. As they were coming down from the mountain, Jesus charged them, “Do not tell the vision to anyone until the Son of Man has been raised from the dead.”

From Former Life to a New Life: Most human beings like progress. They like to move from a lower state of life to a higher one. For example, if one is living in a grass thatched hut, he/she would like to progress and live in a brick house with corrugated iron sheets on the roof. Human beings are most of the time trying to progress towards a better life here on earth. When God called Abram (Gen 12:1-4a) to migrate from where he was living to a place where God himself will show him, God was helping Abram to move towards a better life. Abram had to change his lifestyle from that which he was living before, to a new life that God wanted him to live. This was an act of faith. More so because he had an advanced age.

When Jesus took Peter, James and John to a high mountain and transfigured before them, he was showing them his higher state of life that he would like them to live, a life of holiness, a life that “radiates” before the Lord. In short, he was calling them from their present life to a life of holiness, a life that is acceptable before the Lord. The travel to this journey had started some time back when they were called from fishing. Gradually they kept improving. Like Abraham, their steps called for faith.  Lent is all about change from one’s present lifestyle to a lifestyle that is acceptable before the Lord. It is moving from the present life situation to a new life of holiness. Lent is a time to reflect on how to make a change in one’s lifestyle and adapt a life style that is acceptable before the Lord. Without moving from the present life to a life of holiness, Lent has no meaning. Lent should make people wonder whether the person they are seeing is the same person who never wanted to attend Mass, but is now attending Mass daily even when it is raining. We need to make an effort. We need to make a leap of faith, trusting that God will be with us.

Prayer: Almighty God, help me to always long to do only what makes me be closer to you. Amen.


LET US LISTEN TO THE SON OF GOD: Jesus the Son of God, humbled himself, accepting the ultimate sacrifice of laying down his life, for our sake. Through losing himself, he received God’s honour; the beloved Son of God, with whom God is fully pleased (Mt. 17:5). Jesus desired that his apostles (and we too) share the same glory. Through the “Transfiguration” he revealed his divine glory to the three disciples. Amazed by the spectacle, the disciples remained in shock, and desired not to accept the suffering that was to precede the glory. In the same way, we desire the glory of Jesus, with its honour and blessings, but fail to acknowledge and embrace the suffering, humiliation and death, that come with Christian life.  Whenever we suffer, do we see the face of Christ in the pain, and live in the hope of his glory?