It was not any cleverly invented myths that we were repeating when we brought you the knowledge of the power and the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ; we had seen his majesty for ourselves. He was honoured and glorified by God the Father, when the Sublime Glory itself spoke to him and said, ‘This is my Son, the Beloved; he enjoys my favour.’ We heard this ourselves, spoken from heaven, when we were with him on the holy mountain.
So we have confirmation of what was said in prophecies; and you will be right to depend on prophecy and take it as a lamp for lighting a way through the dark until the dawn comes and the morning star rises in your minds.
2 Peter 1:16-19
Second reading for the Feast of the Transfiguration.
The ultimate reality on which the Christian faith rests is the reality of God – without whom there would be no us, no nothing. Most everything else that we want to say about God has a symbolic and metaphoric quality about it. Our language and our discourse about God and us strives to be true but under the strain of trying to encompass and express the divine and transcendent it cracks.
‘It’s myth’; ‘Just fairy stories’; ‘Prove it really happened!’ The disbelieving reactions are many and not always that polite. And though there is much we can point to – historical records, the testimony of others, finally all these things can be challenged or ignored. At the end we take our stand with Peter. We know the truth of God through our experience of him.
We may not have had such powerful experience as Peter and his companions did at the Trasfiguration, but those moments of encounter and experience that we have had, and the community which has had such experience and lives by it, sustain us, and we move on all the better for what sustains us.
Mosaic. St Peter's Rome. (c) 2016, Allen Morris.