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Vol: 46, No.20 2ND SUNDAY OF LENT ( C) March 17 2019  
 
LITURGY AND LIFE
1ST Reading:
ABRAHAM'S FAITH
Despite the promises, Abraham does not as yet possess any of the land nor has any child been born to him. God promises to remove both these obstacles in Abraham’s life. As for descendants he will have as many as the stars in heaven. Abraham believes. When God renews the promise of land, Abraham raises an objection in the form of a question, “how am I to know that I shall possess it?” Scripture nowhere condemns those asking honest questions or sincerely seeking assurance. In this case, Abraham was given a far-reaching vision of his descendants’ future destiny in the land. In fact God assures Abraham through a covenant. The symbol of God passing between the animals as fire is similar to that of the pillar of fire in the Exodus by which God led the people in the desert (Exod 13:21). All of these images confirm that this is a very solemn occasion indeed.
2ND Reading:
CROSS, A SYMBOL OF LIFE
When we come to the New Testament we find a notable change in perspective regarding earthly possessions. Paul says that our citizenship is in heaven. We are all proud of our earthly citizenship, but we have to value above all the gift of a heavenly life and citizenship, and we live in hope of our future inheritance that we will receive in its fullness in the future. Thus we eagerly await the reappearing from heaven of our Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ. How do we attain our heavenly citizenship? It is through the cross of Christ. In two ways the cross is at the very centre of Christianity. It is central because we believe that through the death of Christ on the cross we have the way of forgiveness and acceptance with God and thus of eternal life. The cross is also central to our understanding of discipleship. Jesus calls us to take up our cross and follow him (Mk 8:34; Lk 9:23). Some Christians in Philippi have turned enemies of the cross and Paul
 
predicts their destruction, “Their end is their destruction, their god is the belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things.”
GOSPEL:
THE TRANSFIGURATION
The gospel of today presents the transfiguration of the Lord. Jesus has just said, “Whoever is ashamed of me and of my words, of him will the Son of man be ashamed when he comes in his glory.” After this the evangelist presents what this glory means. The glorious scene is witnessed by the chosen apostles. The appearance of his countenance is altered and raiment becomes dazzling white. Moses and Elijah appear and they talk about Jesus’ departure to heaven. Moses and Elijah are great Old Testament prophetic figures but they are not equal to Jesus. That is why Peter’s suggestion to make three tents looks silly for he treats Jesus as equal to Moses and Elijah. The cloud covers them and a heavenly voice is heard. It is Jesus who should be listened to. This in short is what the vision means.
The Transfiguration marks an important stage in the revelation of Jesus as the Christ and Son of God. It is an experience similar to that of his baptism for in both instances the voice of the Father is heard calling Jesus as his beloved Son. The glory revealed at his Transfiguration denotes the royal presence, for the kingdom of God is in the midst of his people. The Transfiguration is a focal point in the revelation of the kingdom of God, for it looks back to the Old Testament and shows how Christ fulfils it, and it looks forward to the great events of the cross, resurrection, ascension and the parousia. The feast of the Transfiguration is a reminder as well as an assurance that Christian lives should be oriented towards meeting Christ in his glory. As the possibility is well within us, let us work our way towards the attainment of this goal.
– AK
March 2019 (2nd Week of Lent, Year I) Psalter Week 2
19 Mon (V) St Cyril of Jerusalem, Dan 9:4-10/ Ps 79:8-9, 11, 13/ Lk 6:36-38
20 Tue (W) ST JOSEPH, HUSBAND OF MARY, Solemnity, 2 Sam 7:4-5, 12-14, 16/
Ps 89:2-5, 27, 29/ Rom 4:13, 16-18, 22/ Mt 1:16, 18-21, 24 or Lk 2:41-51
21 Wed (V) Jer 18:18-20/ Ps 31:5-6, 14-16/ Mt 20:17-28
22 Thu (V) Jer 17:5-10/ Ps 1:1-4, 6/ Lk 16:19-31
23 Fri (V) Gen 37:3-4, 12-13, 17-28/ Ps 105:16-21/ Mt 21:33-43, 45-46
24 Sat (V) St Toribio de Mogrovejo, Mic 7:14-15, 18-20/ Ps 103:1-4, 9-12/ Lk 15:1-3, 11-32
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