Readings (Year B)
Reflection: A journey of conversion
Catholics make up a rich, diverse, multi-cultural, worldwide religious family, with 1.2 billion people in the Body of Christ—the Roman Catholic Church. We are not always aware of the rich spiritual reality that binds us and nourishes our spirit as we are guided on our earthly pilgrimage.
Liturgically, we are into the second Sunday of Lent, on a journey of conversion toward Jerusalem, where we will witness the greatest event humanity has ever experienced, namely, Jesus’ Passion, death, resurrection and ascension into heaven. However, we make a conscious effort to be aware of this reality that surrounds us. We recall it for our benefit and salvation, since our all-knowing God needs no reminder. It is for our benefit for growth in holiness.
How does the prayer of the church guide us on this road to conversion? As descendants of Abraham, we are also asked to make a sacrifice (Gen. 22:1-18). Abraham was tested by God. By sparing his son, Isaac, he was made to focus on a descendant of King David—Jesus Christ. This is reason enough for wanting to change and offer my heart to God (Rom. 8:31-34). This is the sacrifice pleasing to God.
I was privileged to be on Mount Tabor and celebrate the Eucharist with a group of pilgrims (Mark 9:2-10). Our attitude was on attentiveness to the mystery and revelation of the glory of God, calling us to change, to convert because of the very holiness of God. To let ourselves be wrapped in the splendor and glory of God and reflect the very holiness of God. It is what God does to us that changes us, and converts us. It is God’s creative action that affects the quality of our conversion.
One person that helps us capture this Transfiguration experience is Mary of Nazareth—Mary as the hearer of the Word, Mary as the bearer of the Word. No wonder Catholics have a unique devotion to Mary, the Mother of Jesus. Mary helps us be in the very heart of the Church and accompany other fellow Christians on their journey of conversion.
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