The Transfiguration of the Lord, Year A, Intermediate

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Intermediate Session

Daniel 7:9-10, 13-14
Matthew 17:1-9

Opening Prayer

Let us pray.

Dear Jesus,
Thank you for helping us to know your Father.
Help us know you better,
so we can know your Father better.

Opening Life Reflection

Invite the children to think of a time when they learned exciting news about someone who is important to them. Invite them to share how the news was shared with them and how they felt when they heard the news. Did they believe it immediately, or did they suspect it was a trick?

Ask them to talk about ways they share important news about themselves with their best friends and family members.

Listening to the Word of God

In the First Reading, Daniel has a dream with some vivid imagery. Listen to learn what he sees.

Proclaim Daniel 7:9-10, 13-14

Allow time for silent reflection.

Scripture Discussion Starters

  • What images did you hear? (List these on the whiteboard or flip chart.)
  • What do you think these images represent? (List suggestions on the whiteboard or flip chart.)

In the Gospel, Jesus reveals important details about himself to his disciples. Listen to hear what is revealed.

Proclaim Matthew 17:1-9.

Allow time for silent reflection.

Scripture Discussion Starters

  • What happens when the disciples follow Jesus up the mountain?
  • Why do you think he is with Moses and Elijah?
  • What does the voice in the cloud reveal about Jesus?

Scripture Background

Provide 2-3 minutes of background information on the readings.

Today’s First Reading is what is called apocalyptic literature. It uses symbolic images to reveal what might happen in the future, but is really a kind of code to describe the events that were happening in the time it was written. In this passage, the Son of Man is Jesus, who will come to save the Israelites who are in exile.

In today’s Gospel, Jesus leads Peter, James, and John up a mountain to reveal to them that he is the Son of God. Mountains were often places of prayer, where people encountered the presence of God. It is important that they also saw Moses and Elijah. Moses represents the law, and Elijah represents the prophets. When God’s voice in the cloud tells the disciples that Jesus is God’s Son, Moses and Elijah disappear, because Jesus is the fulfillment of the law and prophets that came before him. Jesus tells us everything that God had communicated through the law and the prophets.

Questions for Deeper Reflection

  • Why do you think Jesus took Peter, James, and John up the mountain to reveal his identity?
  • Why do you think Jesus told the disciples to not tell anyone else about what they saw?
  • In what ways do we see Jesus revealed as the Son of God?

[If you are not going to continue with the doctrinal discussion, proceed to the Gospel in Life.]

Doctrinal Discussion Starters

Visions and Private Revelations

The Catholic Church teaches that Jesus Christ alone reveals all that God wants us to know about God. Everything about Jesus—his life, mission, suffering, Death, Resurrection and Ascension— reveals the Father’s love through the Holy Spirit. God is still revealed to people, sometimes in quiet words or ideas, and sometimes in big visions. These experiences don’t reveal anything new about God; Jesus has already revealed all that God chooses to communicate to us about our salvation. Rather, these experiences help people better understand what is communicated through Jesus.

The Gospel in Life

This week, don’t keep Jesus’ identity a secret. When you experience his love and presence in your life, tell others what he has done for you!

Posted in: Sessions A