SUNDAY HOMILIES

SSCC - SUNDAY HOMILIES FOR ALL YEAR ROUND 

As lay associates, sisters and brothers of the Ireland England Province of the Congregation of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus & Mary, we are priviliged to be able to offer you some thoughts and reflections on our Sunday readings.  Many of our lay associates, sisters and brothers have contributed to putting together for the first time, homilies which cover every Sunday of the Liturgical year.  We hope that you will find this service to be of assistance to you in your ministry or just as an opportunity for you to reflect and to pray on the various themes that these reading have to offer us.

preach gospel always

 

4. Homilies Feb 9 (a)            Each Monday, we will try to post the homily for the following w/e on this Homepage.  (See previous homilies below)  

SECOND SUNDAY OF LENT – Year B by Margaret Wilson

The Transfiguration:
Words mean different things to different people. Mention Transfiguration to a Harry Potter fan and immediately the power of magic comes to their mind. Transfiguration Spells .In the words of one ardent fan “ I do hope they start them right away, there is so much to learn , I’m particularly interested in Transfiguration, you know, turning something (someone) into something (someone) else” No magic on the mountain top.  The power of God revealing His Glory through Jesus. “ This is my Son whom I love, Listen to Him” 

A foretaste of what was to come, an embodiment of Hope, The Light of Christ illuminating the world, transforming the suffering of the world, transforming our lives.’ Christ the second Adam restores Glory to the earth .’ (Rob Marshall, pastor, author) For Zac Williams( singer) Christ is The Chain Breaker, Way Maker, Pain Taker. It has been said that the Glory of God comes to us when we are most fully awake. The disciples, Peter, James and John were fully awake on the mountain top though terrified, a stark contrast to when in the future they would be asleep during Jesus’ agony in Gethsemane, witnesses again to the Glory of God. Perhaps we sometimes miss seeing the Glory of God. We can be slow to see and hear and are often not most fully awake in our daily lives and relationships.

The Transfiguration has inspired many famous paintings but if you Google global worship, The Transfiguration in Modern Art and As Exodus, you will see some lesser known contemporary imaginative paintings. My favourite is a mandala of The Transfiguration by Jack Haas which depicts Jesus radiating different colours throughout the world , transforming the dark, suffering, lifeless, broken places with His Glory. His Glory, seen in the everyday. Dag Hammarskjöld puts it this way:

Thou takest the pen
And the lines dance
Thou takest the flute
And the notes shimmer
Thou takest the brush
And the colours sing.

“Listen to Him.” We know the story of Abraham so well, Abraham who knew the cost of listening to God because listening and hearing led to obedience , led Abraham, in trust, to be prepared to sacrifice his longed for only son. But listening also led Abraham to hear God ask him to do a new thing, sacrifice a ram not his son.  Abraham fully awake. Through Abraham’s obedience not only he but his offspring and all nations would be blessed. This was God’s promise then and it is God’s promise to us now. Through costly obedience we too, those we love and many we don’t know even know can be partakers of God’s blessings . Peter, James and John were, like Abraham , on a mountain when they heard God’s voice . Many enjoy being on the top of mountains, the exhilaration (and exhaustion!) of the climb, the sense of achievement once the summit is reached, the stunning views( weather permitting!). When someone says: ”I feel on top of the world” we understand what they mean. Life is good at that moment for them, they feel in control, all is well with the world. 

God on the mountain. Those who wouldn’t attend a religious service of any kind often feel a sense of something bigger than themselves, an otherness, when walking up mountains, but we know God is very present in the valleys too.

Sometimes life is hard to bear, full of sorrows, troubles and woe
It’s then I have to remember, it’s in the valley I grow

I have so much to learn and my growth is very slow
Sometimes I need the mountain tops, but it’s in the valley I grow.

Thank you for the valleys Lord , for this one thing I know
The mountain tops are glorious but it’s in the valley I grow ( Jenny Eagleston)

Farmers tell us, and we sometimes notice this ourselves, that pastures and crops can be more lush in the valley, though it depends on many factors as does growth and yield in our own lives. “Listen to Him”, the essential for growth wherever we are planted and whatever the conditions we find ourselves in. As we open hearts, minds and all of who we are to His life giving streams of Love, hearing those reassuring words of Truth “ I am with you always” we are free to grow more into His likeness, becoming more fully awake to His Glory present all around us, transforming the darkness with His Light, enabling many in heartbreaking,’trying to keep head above water’ circumstances to be ‘ more than conquerors,’ through Christ our Risen Lord and Saviour.  

Theologian and poet Malcolm Guite’s sonnet for ‘The Transfiguration’ puts the events on the mountain top so beautifully.

“For that one moment,’ in and out of time’
On that one mountain where all moments meet,
The daily veil that covers the sublime
In darkling glass fell dazzled at his feet.
There were no angels full of eyes and wings
Just living glory full of truth and grace
The Love that dances at the heart of things
Shone out upon us from a human face
And to that light the light in us leaped up
We felt it quicken somewhere deep within
A sudden blaze of long- extinguished hope
Trembled and tingled through the tender skin,
Nor can this blackened sky, this darkened scar
Eclipse that glimpse of how things really are.” AMEN

END

1. Homilies - Sundays of Advent

2. Homilies for January 

3. Homilies for Jan Feb

4. Homilies Feb 9 (a)

Click here for HOMILIES - YEAR A & C