March 4, 2012
Transfiguration, then and now
On this second Sunday of Lent, we will hear the account of the Transfiguration of the Lord, where the appearance of Jesus was transfigured before the eyes of Peter, James and John. The disciples saw Him in glory. This sign of the Lord’s true identity was given, not simply for the awesome experience offered the three disciples; it was all part of God’s plan and desire to bring all humanity back to theirtrue identity as lovingly dependent sons and daughters of their Creator…to save humanity from darkness by the dazzling light and love that Jesus of Nazareth invites us to accept.
The Lord Jesus was transfigured on the mountain. He was transfigured again, in a different kind of glory on Golgotha, in the great sign of his surrender to the Father’s will. As the sacrificed lamb in the new Passover, we are invited to enter the Kingdom, for by his wounds we have been healed (1 Peter 2.4). The true identity of Jesus is seen in both scenes…for Jesus, while our brother as the son of Mary, is our Lord as the Son of God; he came that we may have life…abundant life (John 10.10).
That was then, but what about now? How are the Lenten disciplines of Christ’s Church transformative for us, for Saint Brigid? When we began holy Lent, the Ash Wednesday refrain was repent and believe in the Gospel (Mark 1.15b). We know that the good news is all about Jesus the Lord; but what is this repenting all about?
The Greek word metanoia is the root of this biblical notion of repentance. Metanoia, according to our trusty Merriam-Webster dictionary, means: to repent; a changing of one’s mind; a transformative change of heart. Holy Lent is all about metanoia…repenting of all that has created in us a false self (self-centered, self-absorbed, ignoring the call of God) and seeking a change of heart that will uncover our true self. We are created to be joyfully and happily dependent on God, who is love. We are created to be mirrors of God, as image and likeness (Genesis 1.27). We are created for love: to love and to be loved. Holy Lent…through the disciplines of intensified prayer (relation with the Lord), fasting (bodily prayer) andworks of service (almsgiving and caring for others) are encouraged…that we might turn away from sin (repent) and believe in (live) the Good News of Jesus Christ.
During holy Lent, each of us is called to an individual conversion of heart; but as a parish community, we are called to conversion of heart as a community…as Saint Brigid. I urge you to mark your calendars and smart phones….for our Lenten Mission. In mid-March (19-21), the renowned Fr. Dan Mahan will offer us a mission on the spirituality of stewardship…of being grateful for everything we are given…that is…everything that is good! The talks begin at 7 PM. A nursery will be provided. The talk on Monday will conclude with Adoration and Benediction. The talk on Tuesday will conclude with our parish penance service. The talk on Wednesday will conclude with a parish social in Corbett Hall. Please mark your calendars for 19-21 March.
A special Mass at Saint Brigid
As many of you might know, the ministry with and for those living with disabilities is close to my heart. With our own Deacon David and Patti Briselden and with our own Susan Dorner as coordinators, Saint Brigid will have a new ministry in the near future, to support and lift-up all parishioners living with disabilities. This fledgling ministry is proud to announce that Saint Brigid will host a Faith and Sharing Mass on the 18th of March, at 2 PM. The Disabilities Ministries of the Archdiocese sponsors this twice-yearly Mass. Those living with every sort of disability from all over the Archdiocese will be invited to be part of this Faith and Sharing Mass.
After the liturgy, we will offer a fellowship meal in Corbett Hall, from 3 to 4:30 PM. If you are living with a disability or have a youngster or adult child with disabilities…this Mass is for you. To ensure that we have enough food for all, please let us know if you plan to attend this special liturgy and fellowship (firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com).
And speaking of this special portion of God’s flock, let me invite you to consider volunteering for Toni’s Camp, a Camp & Retreat experience for disabled teens and adults, sponsored by the Archdiocese of Atlanta (paid for by the dollars you give to the Archbishop’s Annual Appeal). Toni’s Camp runs from 4-6 May. I will be there. I hope you might want to join me…in this extraordinary experience of God’s love. Ask me about it…I’ll be happy to sign you up!