Gospel: (Matthew 17:1-9)
Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. And he was transfigured before them; his face shone like the sun and his clothes became white as light. And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, conversing with him. Then Peter said to Jesus in reply, “Lord, it is good that we are here. If you wish, I will make three tents here, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” While he was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud cast a shadow over them, then from the cloud came a voice that said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; LISTEN TO HIM.” When the disciples heard this, they fell prostrate and were very much afraid. But Jesus came and touched them, saying, “Rise, and do not be afraid.” And when the disciples raised their eyes, they saw one else but Jesus alone.”
Christian living is about being “touched” by Jesus so that the fleeting moments of glory are made permanent in bettering the lives of others. We don’t “build tents”; we feed the hungry, clothe the naked, touch the downhearted, visit the lonely, encourage the discouraged…bringing the tenderness of Christ to all persons who are destitute and forgotten. In this way Christ touches others through us. (Living Liturgy, p. 68)
“So very often, many outpourings of affection for God, of resting in his presence, of good feelings toward everyone and sentiments and prayers like these, although very good and very desirable, are nonetheless suspect if they do not express themselves in practical love which has real effects…Let us love God, my brothers, let us love God. But let it be with the strength of our arms and the sweat of our brow.”-St. Vincent de Paul- (McKenna, Praying with Vincent, p.64)
Discussion: (Share your thoughts after a moment of silence)
Vincent, the realist, questioned any love that did not translate into deeds. To what extent does my desire to love and serve stay only in the realm of intention?
Lord, may this season of Lent
–be a time for conversion and action.
Draw our hearts away from selfishness
–turn our lives to loving sacrifice.
Move our minds away from greed
–turn our thoughts to generosity.
Give us the grace to be true Vincentians who
–love God with the strength of our arms and the sweat of our brows. Amen