Sirach 48: 1-4, 9-11
Matthew 17: 10-13


We have to note that today’s Gospel reading follows immediately after the Transfiguration, where Peter, James, and John were witnessing Moses, representing the Law, and Elijah, representing the prophetic tradition, appearing to Jesus and thereby clearly endorsing the mission of Jesus as Messiah.

The reading then starts with them coming down the mountain and Jesus being asked about Elijah. The disciples realised that when Jesus was speaking about Elijah, he was really speaking of St John the Baptist. The role of the returned Elijah was to prepare the way for the Messiah to come into people’s lives. That is exactly what John the Baptist did…

In December 1903, after serval attempts, the Wright brothers achieved successfully getting their ‘flying machine’ off the land. In the excitement they sent a telegraph to their sister Katherine, informing her of the great invention: “We have actually flown 120 feet! Will be home for Christmas”

Katherine beamed in joy, racing down to the editor of the local newspaper, to share in the good news story showing them the telegraph message.

The editor glanced at the message and said: “How nice! So, the boys will be home for Christmas!”

The editor had completely missed the big news – that man had flown for the first time in history!!

How often is this our experience too in life – missing the important points and settling for lower ones. Today, the Gospel invites us to look at God’s Promises, God’s Word, and God’s Will where we will discover the true purpose of it in our lives. This is emphasised more as we prepare for Christmas.

As in previous years we often hear that catch phrase, Jesus is the reason for the season! Let us dare not ‘miss Him’ as we prepare our hearts to receive His Word as He wishes, in our lives and seek to live, in total accord with Him!

Sr Karen Englebretsen CP, Cross and Passion Sisters. blessed to be a spiritual care worker in the homeless sector in Melbourne.