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Second Sunday of Lent – Our transfiguration

Lent season, Holy week and Good friday concept. Palm leave and cross on purple background.

By Msgr Michael de Verteuil

Chair of the Archdiocesan Liturgical Commission


The First Reading (Gen 22:1–2, 9–13,15–18) is the story of Abraham’s faith and obedience to God as he takes his son up the mountain to offer him as a burnt offering.

The story is not about God asking Abraham to do a terrible deed but of Abraham’s absolute obedience to God even when he could not understand what God was doing.

After all, God had promised that Abraham would be the father of many and now God was taking away his only child. We can reflect on our own level of trust in God, our own obedience to God’s will particularly when we do not understand why God is allowing certain things.

The idea of covenant again comes up (as it did four times in last week’s First Reading) as God repeats His promise to Abraham that he would be a father of a great nation.

The Second Reading (Rom 8:31–34) can strengthen our faith in God as it reminds us that, in giving Jesus, the Father gave everything. Jesus now pleads for us ‘at God’s right hand’. ‘With God on our side who can be against us?’ As we continue the journey of conversion in Lent, we pray for increased faith in the trustworthiness of God.

We read of the Transfiguration of Jesus every Second Sunday of Lent. This year, we read Mark’s account (9:2–10). The three disciples accompanying Jesus are privileged to get a glimpse of the glory of Jesus – this will strengthen their faith for all that is to come (though two will run away before the Cross).

Read during Lent, this passage reminds us of the journey of our lives: overcoming our sins until we too are transfigured. Also, we hear the words of the Father, “This is my son, the beloved. Listen to him.” Listen to His teaching and live by it. Examine our lives – are our thoughts, desires, actions, words in line with the teaching of Jesus? What conversion do we need? What do we need to repent of in this time of Lent so that we can come to Easter with new hearts to renew our baptismal commitment, saying ‘yes’ again to the Lord.

In Lent, we journey to Easter – hopefully through our Lenten observances a little closer to our transfiguration as we get there. In life we journey to Heaven where, by the grace of God, we shall be totally transfigured.