‚ÄúThe holy icons are the visual expression of the teaching about the Incarnation of the Savior Jesus Christ and the deification of all human nature through His Sacrifice and Resurrection. It is signaled to us by the Transfiguration of the Lord, of which the Holy Evangelists tell us: ‚ÄěAnd He changed His face before them, and His face shone like the sun, and His garments became as white as the light‚ÄĚ (Matthew 17: 2; Mark 9: 1-8; Luke 9: 27-36). At Tabor our Lord Jesus Christ no longer appeared to the disciples as a slave, but as God. The Fathers showed that the Savior Jesus Christ, changing His countenance, showed to the disciples that divine height to which all men in the Church are called.
After the Transfiguration, the three Apostles, Peter, John, and James, who saw their Master for a few moments in the bright light, with Moses and Elijah, see Him after this event alone before them. The Church will confess that this human face of the Savior contains and circumscribes the whole mystery of the divine economy, the image of Christ becoming ‚ÄěHis own symbol‚ÄĚ, as St. Maximus the Confessor says. This miracle clearly proves that the icon removes any symbolism, establishing the immediate and eternal reality of the divine-human Person of the Savior Christ. Therefore, Christ, transfiguring Himself before the disciples, showed that through the icon we contemplate not only His image, but also His divine and eternal glory. That is why, when we worship the Holy Icons, we see, thanks to the symbolic language of the icon, the light of His divine truth. In other words, the light of the Transfiguration on Mount Tabor truly represents the glory of the age to come, defining the experience of grace in the flesh by deified believers. Therefore, the icon presents the glorious and eternal face of the holy man, indicating at the same time his participation in the divine life in the Holy Spirit‚ÄĚ. ‚Ä† His Eminence Prof. PhD Irineu Popa, Metropolitan of Oltenia