The Pope explained that this episode was related to what had happened six days before, when Jesus revealed to his disciples that in Jerusalem he would have to "suffer a lot and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the scribes, be killed and, after three days, rise again. "
This announcement, said the Pontiff had challenged Peter and the whole group of disciples, who rejected the idea that Jesus was to be rejected by the leaders of the people and killed.
Jesus helps the disciples to understand his Passion
The Pope went on to say that by taking the disciples Peter, James and John and "leading them to a high mountain" and showing them his glory, the glory of the Son of God, the Lord was enabling “the disciples to face the passion of Jesus in a positive way, without being overwhelmed.”
Pope Francis continued that “the transfiguration helps the disciples, and us too, to understand that the passion of Christ is a mystery of suffering, but it is above all a gift of infinite love on the part of Jesus. The event of Jesus transfiguring on the mountain makes us understand better also his resurrection.”
The Pope also underlined that “ if before the passion there had not been the transfiguration with the declaration from God: "This is my beloved Son" the resurrection and the paschal mystery of Jesus would not have been easily as understood in all their depth.”
Lenten prayer and contemplation
During Lent, Pope Francis said it was necessary, “to climb up with Jesus on the mountain and to stop with Him, to be more attentive to the voice of God and to allow oneself to be enveloped and transformed by the Spirit.”
He concluded, that during this time it was important to live out the experience of contemplation and prayer, not to escape from the harshness of everyday life, but to enjoy familiarity with God.