Metropolitan Emmanuel of France officiated at the Metropolitan Cathedral of St. Stephen in Paris on the great Despotic Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord, with Protopresbyter Wladimir Yagello.
Addressing the faithful, the Metropolitan stressed: “The Transfiguration of the Lord is an important event of His earthly life that testifies to His divinity and shows in a simple and understandable way, in the eyes of His three disciples, His dual nature. He did not do it in front of more students so as not to be considered an optical illusion but He chose three of them. Jesus became bright in the body while His face ‘shone like the sun’ and His robes became ‘white as the light.’ He showed the disciples a small sample of His glory because man does not understand the greatness of God, and in addition His three disciples had not yet received the Grace of the Holy Spirit. As the Evangelist writes, ‘They fell on their faces and were terrified’ (Matt. 17: 6). And while Moses and Elijah were talking with Him about His Passion that was to come, Peter wanted to set up tents for them to be protected and able to stay on Mount Tabor. But Christ showed them the heavenly tent that protects everyone, ‘Behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them,’ as was the case in the Old Testament, where God was presented as a cloud. The Transfiguration of the Lord reveals His divinity, so that His disciples do not think that He will hang on the Cross out of weakness, but understand that He has voluntarily sacrificed for their salvation. Dear Christians, the Transfiguration of the Lord enlightens us and strengthens us in the faith, opens the eyes of our hearts and fills us with enthusiasm and hope.”
The Metropolitan of France also referred to the great destruction of Beirut due to the explosion that destroyed most of the city and took the lives of many people. “Our prayers are with the families of the victims in Lebanon. Together we pray for the rest of those souls who have left unjustly. We pray for the recovery of the injured. We pray for our brothers in Beirut, for the destroyed churches and we express our support to all.”