My formation in the Catholic Church reminds me to be more Christ-like in my thoughts and actions. Easter reminds the faithful that life potentiates rebirth. As the world revolves, we continually move from a state of darkness to light; death to dawn, suffering to awareness. As I attend to most people who assume the role of being Christ-like when they suffer and die, I am reminded that prior to His passion and death there was a pivotal moment of enlightenment known as the Transfiguration:
“Jesus took Peter, John, and James and went up a mountain to pray. While he was praying his face changed in appearance and his clothing became dazzling white. And behold, two men were conversing with him, Moses and Elijah, who appeared in glory and spoke of his exodus that he was going to accomplish in Jerusalem. Peter and his companions had been overcome by sleep, but becoming fully awake, they saw his glory.
“As they were about to part from him, Peter said to Jesus, “Master, it is good that we are here . . . While he was still speaking, a cloud came and cast a shadow over them . . . Then from the cloud came a voice that said, “This is my chosen Son; listen to him.” After the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. They fell silent and did not at that time tell anyone what they had seen”. (Luke 9:28b-36)
The Transfiguration of Christ is considered the culminating moment of his public life. It was a glorious moment when His divinity shined through His humanity. Similar to His birth, Jesus is once again seen as the connection between heaven and earth. Transfiguration is defined as a complete change of form or appearance into a more beautiful or spiritual state; to be chosen. By assuming the likeness of Christ, I believe each of us is chosen to die through a spiritual light.
One of the blessings that patients experience when evaluated by an Emergency Medicine physician is that a new pair of eyes can bring clarity to challenging medical dilemmas. As clouds can cast shadows over patients, I am often provided insight into patient’s transfiguration. I am also cautiously silent when others fail to see patients in their spiritual light. Becoming fully awake to a patient’s transfiguration potentially lessens suffering, promoting dignity through Omega care.