Today, the Savior “preaches” to us his final sermon: Prepare for my passion. On the mount, Jesus appears to his disciples in glory as the Son of God. The Epiphany season is bookended by the voice of God the Father proclaiming Jesus his Son. Before he suffered as man’s substitute, Jesus gave his Church a glimpse of the glory that he set aside to be our Savior. See how much he loves us! The God of Mt. Sinai, the Majestic Glory, became a man to suffer and die for us, just as Moses and the Prophets had foretold. It is good that we are here.
Today we also bid “farewell” to alleluia. It is the custom that alleluia is not spoken or sung in the church from Ash Wednesday until Easter morn. It is omitted from the Verse of the Day, the hymns, and liturgical songs. We stifle our joy during the season of Lent as we prepare and observe the Passion of our Lord. But don’t worry; the church will shout it again on Easter morning as she rejoices at the entrance to the empty tomb.