Knights Must Live the Spirit of the Transfiguration, says Montreal Cardinal

Mass Photos  Text of Homliy

Cardinal Turcotte

Cardinal Turcotte

In a stirring homily on the second day of the Supreme Council Meeting, Cardinal Jean-Claude Turcotte of Montreal weaved together a number of applications of the convention theme, “Building a Civilization of Love Through Charity, Unity and Fraternity.”

Cardinal Justin Rigali of Philadelphia was the principal celebrant of the Wednesday morning Mass Aug. 6, the feast of the Transfiguration.

Preaching in English and French, Cardinal Turcotte said that all people of the world long for a civilization based on love because only love can satisfy the desire of the human heart. Yet the question remains about how to build such a civilization. Many efforts have failed to create such a civilization because they were based on the wrong principles, he observed.

“The other part of your theme begins to provide the answer,” Cardinal Turcotte continued. A civilization of love must be built “through charity, unity and fraternity. … I see behind these words the hard-working, practical, ‘can-do’ spirit of the Knights of Columbus.

“But the fact that we are gathered for the Eucharist, and that we take the time to listen to these words of the Bible expresses an even deeper reality: we are people of faith, and it is our faith that encourages us to bring hope and love to the world.”

Cardinal Justin Rigali

Cardinal Justin Rigali of Philadelphia was the principal celebrant.

Drawing on the Scripture readings from the Mass, the cardinal said that the Transfiguration underlines the fact that in Jesus, the human and the divine coexist in perfect harmony. This, in turn, tells us something about the human person.

“His face is dazzling as the sun, but it is still his human face,” he said. “Who he is, as a human being, is still present. His human nature is still intact. His divine nature is powerfully revealed – but only by gazing at a human face. It is a face we see today in our brothers and sisters, and in particular the poor and helpless.”

Cardinal Turcotte emphasized, “To build a civilization of love means to seek the face of Jesus in others.”

The Transfiguration also tells us how to live in the world but not be of the world, the cardinal stated. After the Apostles witnessed the glory of the Lord, they still had to go down the mountain to continue their daily life. “Our lives – even the practice of our faith – can seem mundane at times,” Cardinal Turcotte observed. “We may even live in times of personal or communal darkness. But this does not mean that Jesus is not there. He is.”