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As they come down from the mountain …

Saturday, December 16, 2006
Saturday 2 of Advent

Readings: Ecclesiasticus (Sirach) 48:1-4,9-11; Psalm 79; Matthew 17:10-13

Jesus comes down from the mountain with Peter, James and his brother John. The reading of today’s gospel comes just after the story of the transfiguration in which the disciples —looking up— saw no one except Jesus himself. Nevertheless, on the high mountain, the disciples do not understand and do not know that Elijah is coming and has already come. They want to make for him a dwelling…

Surprisingly enough, it is only by descending the mountain that the disciples are able to understand what is happening. It is only by discussing with Jesus —coming down the mountain— that these three disciples are able to discover that Jesus was speaking to them about John the Baptist… We have to contemplate, but we need to share the fruits of this contemplation if we are to understand better what we are and what Jesus is for us. This is what Christian life —and Dominican life!— is about.

In our lives, we sometimes come across high mountains of contemplation. We also meet valleys. The journey of Peter, James and John is the one taken by every faithful person. We are not Christians alone. We have to descend from our mountains and share what we have seen, otherwise they would become mere ivory towers… It is only by sharing and discussing that we will be able to share and to grasp what we are and what Jesus is for us. Why should we not use this time of Advent to descend into the depth of what we are and there discover the high place in which He indwells?


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