Homily for Second Sunday of Lent

Theme: Foretaste of Communion Mt. 17:1-9

Fr. Pablo Carpio

The glorious scene of the Transfiguration always gives delight to the heart.. To picture and meditate on Jesus in dazzling white, with Moses, the Father of the Law, and Elijah, the Father of the Prophets, beside Him, with the Disciples Peter, James and John at his feet, and finally the presence of God the Father manifested by His voice, gives a foretaste that elicits hope for the glory that awaits everyone because of the redemption won by Jesus by his passion, death and resurrection.

Relishing the scene brings back to memory the scene of the Baptism of Jesus where the Communion of the Trinity was first revealed. Jesus rising from the waters, the Holy Spirit descending in the form of a dove and the voice of the Father was heard. It is worth noting that in both events, the Father affirmed that Jesus is “His beloved Son in whom He is well pleased.” Although, the Holy Spirt was not mentioned in the Gospel account of the Transfiguration, it is with certitude to assert his presence during the said event, for the Trinity is always in Communion with each other.

On the one hand, Baptism marked the beginning of Jesus’ public ministry, the Transfiguration “renewed” him as it were before he faced his passion and death on the other. Both pointing to the Communion of the Trinity at work in the economy of salvation.

In the Year of Ecumenism, Interreligious Dialogue and Indigenous Peoples where the elusive Harmony is sought by the Philippine Church as part of the celebrations of the 500th year of Christianity come year 2021, all are asked to desire, pray and work for Communion: That all may be one under God. Because only in Communion can Glory be attained. Dialogue is the key. Not debate. Moses and Elijah were in Dialogue with Jesus, Peter with Jesus, the Father with all who were present. There was diversity in nature and generation. But there was Communion because there was Dialogue.

In the Philippines where there is multiplicity of religions, ethnicities, cultures, languages even of races and nationalities, finding harmony would seem too difficult a task. Maybe improbable, but not impossible.

Pope Francis suggests, to find a baseline for Dialogue, go back and be renewed by baptism. By Baptism, whether in voto or in re, all are united and find communion under God. When one earnestly seeks and lives the truth, where life is according to God’s moral precepts, there is communion with God and neighbor.

After Tabor was Calvary. Assuring rather than daunting, Calvary too was an epiphany of the Communion of the Trinity: the last word of Jesus, “Father, into your hands I commend my Spirit”. Whatever difficulties there are then, the want to be transfigured into the glory of Jesus and thus be incorporated into the Communion of the Trinity is the inspiration and motivation. God has given a foretaste of Communion. Journey now towards the fullness of Communion.