‘Stand up, do not be afraid!’
Traditionally, on the second Sunday of Lent, we read and pray with the Transfiguration of Jesus: the event that Matthew, Mark and Luke tell us took place up a high mountain. It is an episode that gives us a glimpse of both Jesus’s humanity and his divinity. Here Jesus is also able to reassure his friends – and us – that there is no need to be afraid, even as we witness such extraordinary events. (Gospel)
Before the Gospel, we hear of the Lord speaking to Abram, telling him to leave everything he knows with the promise of great blessings. (First Reading)
The Psalm reflects on the faithfulness of God’s word. He will be our help and shield if, like Abram, we place our hope in him.
Both Abram’s call and the disciples’ witnessing of the Transfiguration do not occur as a reward, but by ‘God’s own purpose and grace’ (Second Reading). Paul encourages Timothy to accept the hardships he encounters and rely on the power of God, strengthened by the grace of the appearing of Jesus Christ.
This week, then, as we continue on our Lenten journey, we might want to focus our prayer on all those who are afraid, asking that they place their hope in the Lord and experience his comforting love.