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A team of 200 priests comment on daily Gospel

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Liturgical day: Saturday 6th in Ordinary Time

1st Reading (Heb 11:1-7): Brothers and sisters: Faith is the realization of what is hoped for and evidence of things not seen. Because of it the ancients were well attested. By faith we understand that the universe was ordered by the word of God, so that what is visible came into being through the invisible. By faith Abel offered to God a sacrifice greater than Cain’s. Through this, he was attested to be righteous, God bearing witness to his gifts, and through this, though dead, he still speaks. By faith Enoch was taken up so that he should not see death, and he was found no more because God had taken him. Before he was taken up, he was attested to have pleased God. But without faith it is impossible to please him, for anyone who approaches God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him. By faith Noah, warned about what was not yet seen, with reverence built an ark for the salvation of his household. Through this, he condemned the world and inherited the righteousness that comes through faith.
Responsorial Psalm: 144
R/. I will praise your name for ever, Lord.
Every day will I bless you, and I will praise your name forever and ever. Great is the Lord and highly to be praised; his greatness is unsearchable.

Generation after generation praises your works and proclaims your might. They speak of the splendor of your glorious majesty and tell of your wondrous works.

Let all your works give you thanks, o Lord, and let your faithful ones bless you. Let them discourse of the glory of your Kingdom and speak of your might.
Verscicle before the Gospel (Cf. Mk 9:6): Alleluia. The heavens were opened and the voice of the Father thundered: «This is my beloved Son. Listen to him». Alleluia.

Gospel text (Mk 9,2-13): Jesus took with him Peter and James and John, and led them up a high mountain. There his appearance was changed before their eyes. Even his clothes shone, becoming as white as no bleach of this world could make them. Elijah and Moses appeared to them; the two were talking with Jesus.

Then Peter spoke and said to Jesus, «Master, it is good that we are here; let us make three tents, one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah». For he did not know what to say; they were overcome with awe. But a cloud formed, covering them in a shadow, and from the cloud came this word, «This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him». And suddenly, as they looked around, they no longer saw anyone except Jesus with them.

As they came down the mountain, He ordered them to tell no one what they had seen, until the Son of Man be risen from the dead. So they kept this to themselves, although they discussed with one another what ‘to rise from the dead’ could mean.

Finally they asked him, «Why then do the teachers of the Law say that Elijah must come first?». Jesus answered them, «Of course, Elijah will come first so that everything may be as it should be... But, why do the Scriptures say that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be despised? I tell you that Elijah has already come and they have treated him as they pleased, as the Scriptures say of him».

«He ordered them to tell no one what they had seen»

Fr. Xavier ROMERO i Galdeano
(Cervera, Lleida, Spain)

Today, the Transfiguration in Mark's Gospel presents us an already solved enigma. Saint Mark's evangelic texts are full of messianic secrets, of isolated moments where Jesus forbids telling no one what He might have done. Today, and right here, we have a “sample”. When Jesus «ordered them (his disciples) to tell no one what they had seen, until the Son of Man be risen from the dead» (Mk 9:9).

But, what, does this Messianic Secret consist of? The messianic secret consists in lifting the veil a little to slightly reveal what is hidden below; for the whole mystery will only be totally uncovered, in the light of his Paschal Mystery, when Jesus' last days are over. We can see it clearly in this Gospel: Transfiguration is just a moment, a taste of glory, to give the apostles the possibility to decipher the meaning of that intimate moment.

Jesus had announced his disciples the imminent moment of His Passion, but upon seeing them so perturbed because of his tragic final, He explains with words and facts how his last days would be: days of passion and death, but days that will be over with his resurrection. Here is the enigma unraveled. Saint Thomas Aquinas says: «To properly walk one's way it takes one to know first, somehow, the target one is aiming at».

Our Christian lives have also an aim uncovered by our Lord Jesus Christ: to enjoy God's unfailing love forever and ever. But this target will not be lacking in moments of sacrifice and crucial pains. However, we have to remember the live message of today's Gospel: in this apparent blind alley which, so often, seems to be our life, because of our fidelity to God, and while spending our life immerse and living in the spirit of the Beatitudes, the tragic ending will be cracked to give way to our enjoying God eternally.