During the six weeks of Lent 2020, Bishop Donal McKeown invites us, as individuals, as families and parish faith communities of the Diocese of Derry, to use the six Sunday Gospels of Lent to look at the life of service to which God is calling all of us, as the 2020 disciples of Jesus.
Priests and parishioners of the diocese are asked to create opportunities in their parish for discussion of each Gospel reflection.
The parish conversation may take place over a cup of tea after Mass, it might take place after a Weekday Mass, it might be in the form of a more structured discussion perhaps put together by the Parish Pastoral Council. It could be a case of handing out flyers at Mass with the discussion points, so that families can discuss them at home.
Bishop Donal's second reflection for consideration is outlined below.
Second Sunday of Lent, 8 March 2020 Gospel: The Transfiguration
Reflection by Bishop Donal
The Transfiguration of Jesus in the presence of three of His disciples may have been a bewildering or confusing moment for them but, beyond that, it was a glimpse of the glory of God, a changing moment that would strengthen them in faith and give them the courage and hope they needed for the challenging and dark times ahead.
Reflections for discussion and consideration:
- Things that we don't anticipate can happen in our lives (or in the lives of others) that cause us anxiety, fear or confusion. We may even wonder sometimes where God is! Like the three disciples in today's Gospel, however, we may also experience special moments of God's grace – precious moments of transfiguration and knowledge of His presence - that renew us in faith and hope.
How can we encourage each other through our Catholic faith, to give renewed hope to others in times of doubt, fear or despair?
How can the parish support the pastoral needs of the community in times of need?
- Staying close to God through prayer and through the sacraments increases our awareness of His loving presence, especially in challenging times.
Are we allowing the sacramental opportunities that are available to us to 'transfigure' our relationship with God as we prepare for the events of Holy Week and Easter?
As a parish, how can we best share with others the benefits of participating in the Sacraments for everyone to experience the enduring and loving presence of God?
- Jesus was transfigured in order to prepare the apostles for the difficulties that lay ahead. We face many challenges in Church today.
Are we inclined to tell a story about the present and future that is dominated by loss and negativity, or do we prepare for the future with positivity and trust in the power of Christ's Resurrection?
+ Donal McKeown
Bishop of Derry
Liturgy music suggestions for Sunday, 8 March
- Christ be beside me
- All people that on earth do dwell
- Be thou my vision
Diocesan Prayer for Lent 2020