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Today's Gospel + short theological explanation

August 6th: Transfiguration of Our Lord (A)

Gospel text (Mt 17,1-9): Jesus took with him Peter and James and his brother John and led them up a high mountain where they were alone. Jesus' appearance was changed before them: his face shone like the sun and his clothes became bright as light. Just then Moses and Elijah appeared to them, talking with Jesus (…). And as they came down the mountain, Jesus commanded them not to tell anyone what they had just seen, until the Son of Man be raised from the dead.

On the "mount" of Transfiguration

EDITORIAL TEAM evangeli.net (based on texts by Benedict XVI) (Città del Vaticano, Vatican)

Today, we see the Lord carrying His three favorite ones, and taking them to a mountain. We will find them together again on another mountain —Mount of Olives— in the Lord’s extreme distress, as an image contrasting with the Transfiguration, although both are inextricably interrelated: the divinity of Jesus is related to the Cross; only in that relationship we can correctly recognize Jesus Christ.

The scene, other than the various "mountains" of the life of Christ (Calvary, Ascension…), reminds us of the mountains of Old Testament revelation (Horeb, Sinai, and Moriah): they are mountains of "passion" and "revelation" at the same time. Moses and Elijah received God's revelation on the mount: now they are talking with He Who is Revelation (and Law) in person. With their suffering, both were figures of the passion: now they are talking about the impending Passion of the Transfigured.

—Jesus, while we go down the mountain, You speak about your "resurrection from the dead": our hope will pass through Mount Calvary.