The feast of the Transfiguration, celebrated today, August 6th, is a special holiday to me in the Church calendar. As a child, the story of the transfiguration was (ironically) utterly veiled to me. It was a weird story of Jesus glowing on a mountain and confusing the three disciples with him, and it made no sense to me at all. Only in the liturgical tradition, seeing the various texts of Scripture appointed for this day, did I piece together the biblical significance of the transfiguration, and the way it points to (and prepares for) the Gospel events surrounding our Lord’s death and resurrection.
This holiday also ended up being my wife’s and my second-born’s birthday. It was a funny story – he was due around the 10th of August, so my last Sunday serving our church before paternity leave for the rest of the month was August 6th, Transfiguration Day. I was responsible about it, though, and made sure I had my sermon fully written out just in case our baby was early and I would have to hand the sermon to someone else to read in my place. Sure enough that’s exactly what happened. I even got some positive feedback on it, so I’ve dubbed it “my best sermon I never preached”.
So now, two years later, I’ve recorded it, so others can celebrate this feast day and begin to put the pieces together too, if you haven’t before. The Gospel text of the transfiguration event is from Luke 9, which you should probably read before listening to the sermon about it. If you’ve said Morning Prayer already, then you’ll have read Mark’s account of the transfiguration, which I’m sure should also suffice.