Posted on February 28, 2023 by Published by

When Jesus was transfigured before the Apostles, they saw what Jesus would look like in all of His glory after the Resurrection. In the Eastern Catholic and Orthodox Churches, the Transfiguration is understood as Christ revealing to the Apostles what they would become through union with Him: divinized.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church states, “In sin man preferred himself to God and by that very act scorned him. He chose himself over and against God, against the requirements of his creaturely status and therefore against his own good. Constituted in a state of holiness, man was destined to be fully ‘divinized’ by God in glory. Seduced by the devil, he wanted to ‘be like God’, but ‘without God, before God, and not in accordance with God’” (398). In other words, God’s original plan was that we participate in His glory and divinity. However, Adam and Eve chose to be like

God on their own, which led to their fall. Every time we sin, we too try to be like God on our own, which leads to death, and in some cases, damnation.
The path to sanctity is a process where, as we turn away from sin and submit ourselves to God’s action, we are drawn into deeper union with God and participate more and more in His divinity. We become more like God because God gives us His grace to be like Him. Nowhere does this occur more powerfully than in the sacraments, especially in the Eucharist, where we partake of Jesus’ Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity, and are transformed more and more into Him.

Lent is a special time where we make an extra effort through prayer, sacrifice, and almsgiving to turn away from the sins that prevent us from growing closer to God. The whole purpose of this liturgical season is to become less attached to the things that enslave us and more attached to the Lord. Through this deeper union, “[God gives] himself to us through his Spirit. By the participation of the Spirit, we become communicants in the divine nature… For this reason, those in whom the Spirit dwells are divinized” (CCC 1988). When the Apostles looked on the Transfigured Christ, they saw what they too would become in Him and through His grace. Let us open ourselves up to God’s grace and divinizing action so that one day we may be glorified in Christ in Heaven.

Yours in Christ,
Father Arthur

Readings for the Second Sunday of Lent: Lectionary 25

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