06 August 2006

Odd Man Out

Lutherans are sort of odd man out today. August 6th is the day that most Christians (Orthodox and Roman Catholics and Anglicans) celebrate our Lord's Transfiguration, glorying in the uncreated light that shone upon Tabor. In the 16th century, most Lutherans (the Swedes a major exception, I believe) transferred this celebration to the end of the Epiphany season, celebrating it is as the last great epiphany of our Lord before His Pascha. Still, in honor of our many sisters and brothers who are rejoicing in the Feast on this day, my all time favorite hymn for the feast, sung to the majestic Agincourt Hymn known as Deo Gracias:

O wondrous type! O vision fair
Of glory that the Church may share,
Which Christ upon the mountain shows,
Where brighter than the sun He glows!

With Moses and Elijah nigh
The incarnate Lord holds converse high;
And from the cloud the Holy One
Bears record to the only Son!

With shining face and bright array
Christ deigns to manifest today
What glory shall be theirs above
Who joys in God with perfect love.

And faithful hearts are raised on high
By this great vision's mystery,
For which in joyful strains we raise
The voice of prayer, the hymn of praise.

O Father, with the Eternal Son,
And Holy Spirit, ever one,
We pray Thee, bring us by Thy grace
To see Thy glory face to face! (LSB #413)

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

This sister appreciates your entry.

Deb

christopher3rd said...

It is more chronologically correct to place the Transfiguration at the very end of Epiphany since it took place 40 days before the Crucifixion. Since this conflicted with Great Lent, the Feast was transferred to August 6 because it is 40 days before the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross on September 14. A sort of liturgical substitution of meaning for chronology.

I had read that a long time ago, but was reminded of it today in the sermon at Liturgy.

Have a great vacation.

Brian said...

Unfortunately, the moving of the Feast of the Transfiguration is only one of the lesser reasons that make us Lutherans the odd man out.

William Weedon said...

Brian,

Too true - especially as regards our living out of the faith we profess.

Pax!

William Weedon said...

Chris,

Thanks for the interesting info!