August 6

Transfiguration of the Lord

The Story of the Transfiguration of the Lord

All three Synoptic Gospels tell the story of the Transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-8; Mark 9:2-9; Luke9:28-36). With remarkable agreement, all three place the event shortly after Peter’s confession of faith that Jesus is the Messiah and Jesus’ first prediction of his passion and death. Peter’s eagerness to erect tents or booths on the spot suggests it occurred during the week-long Jewish Feast of Booths in the fall.

According to Scripture scholars, in spite of the texts’ agreement it is difficult to reconstruct the disciples’ experience, because the Gospels draw heavily on Old Testament descriptions of the Sinai encounter with God, and prophetic visions of the Son of Man. Certainly Peter, James, and John had a glimpse of Jesus’ divinity strong enough to strike fear into their hearts. Such an experience defies description, so they drew on familiar religious language to describe it. And certainly Jesus warned them that his glory and his suffering were to be inextricably connected—a theme John highlights throughout his Gospel.

Tradition names Mount Tabor as the site of the revelation. A church first raised there in the fourth century was dedicated on August 6. A feast in honor of the Transfiguration was celebrated in the Eastern Church from about that time. Western observance began in some localities about the eighth century.

On July 22, 1456, Crusaders defeated the Turks at Belgrade. News of the victory reached Rome on August 6, and Pope Callistus III placed the feast on the Roman calendar the following year.





Mount Tabor

Mount Tabor is located in Lower Galilee, Israel, at the eastern end of the Jezreel Valley, 11 miles (18 km) west of the Sea of Galilee. It is believed by many Christians to be the site of the Transfiguration of Jesus. It is also known the Mount of Transfiguration.







  • 1 cucumber, diced

  • 2 medium tomatoes, diced

  • 1 head of romaine lettuce, shredded

  • 2 scallions, chopped or ½ red onion diced

  • 2 Tbsp chopped parsley


  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice

  • 1 Tbsp olive oil

  • 2 Tsp white wine vinegar

  • 1 dash of salt

  • 1 dash of freshly ground pepper


  1. Instructions for salad:

  2. Combine cucumber, tomatoes, romaine, scallions (or onions) and parsley.

  3. Instructions for dressing:

  4. Combine lemon juice, olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper, mix into salad right before serving.



  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt

  • 2 tablespoon finely minced fresh flat-leaf parsley

  • 1 tablespoon finely minced fresh thyme leaves

  • 1 tablespoon finely minced fresh rosemary leaves

  • 5 cloves garlic, finely minced

  • 2 tablespoon grainy mustard

  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest

  • 3 tablespoon olive oil

  • 1 (3 ½-pound) shoulder of lamb, rolled and tied

  • 1 cup beef stock

  • 1/2 cup red wine

  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch (optional)


  1. Combine salt, parsley, thyme, rosemary, garlic, lemon zest, mustard, and oil in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade. 

  2. Process until a smooth paste forms. Slather the herb mixture over lamb and let it rest, covered, out of the fridge. Preheat the oven to 325°F. 

  3. Place lamb on a rack set in a roasting pan and roast for about 1½ hours. Add half the stock and half the wine, baste lamb and continue roasting, until an instant read thermometer reads 145° to 150°F, about 30 minutes longer.

  4. Check the pan periodically to baste lamb and add more water or stock if needed. When lamb is done, transfer to a plate and cover loosely with foil. 

  5. Place the roasting pan directly on your stovetop and heat the pan juices over low heat. Add remaining stock and wine to the roasting pan, scraping up the bits that cling to the bottom of the pan. To thicken the sauce, create a slurry with cornstarch and 2 tablespoons of water, and stir into the sauce. Bring to a boil and repeat if necessary. Slice lamb and serve with the gravy spooned on top.

Serve with Israeli Couscous

  1. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add 2 cups Israeli couscous and toast until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add 3 cups chicken or vegetable broth; bring to a boil. 

  2. Reduce heat and simmer, covered until most of the liquid has been absorbed, about 10 minutes.  Stir in ½ cup halved pitted kalamata olives, ¼ cup chopped fresh flat leaf parsley, 3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint leaves, 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves, and grated zest of half a lemon (or more, to taste). Drizzle with good quality olive oil and serve.





  • 4½ cups white four

  • 2 cups semolina flour

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 4 tablespoon sugar

  • 200 gr soft vegan butter

  • 1 cup canola oil

  • 1½ cups lukewarm water

  • 1 teaspoon rose water


  • 1 kg soft dates, pitted, or ground dates that are sold as a paste with no sugar added.
    (Soak dates for 30 minutes if they are too hard to use)

  • 1/2 c walnuts, chopped

  • 1 tablespoon canola oil

  • ½ cup concord wine

  • 2 teaspoon cinnamon

  • Powdered sugar for decoration


  1. Mix the dry ingredients. Add the margarine, oil, water, and rose water and use your hands to make a dough (you can use a mixer or a food processor as well). Add water as needed.

  2. If you use fresh dates and they are on the dry side, soak them with some hot water for 30 minutes, then drain them. Cut into small pieces and add the oil (no oil is needed if you use the paste). Mix the dates with concord wine and cinnamon. If the dates are still tough, microwave until soft.

  3. Divide the dough into 8 balls, roll each ball to a ½ cm thick rectangle. Spread the dates mixture over the dough, add nuts and roll the dough to make a cookie. Place on a lined baking sheet and slice, about 2 cm thick.

  4. Bake at 350° F for 35 minutes until top is golden. Let cool, then separate the slices and spread powdered sugar for decoration.

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