Gospel: Mt 5:1-12
When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain. He sat down and his disciples gathered around him. Then he spoke and began to teach them:
Fortunate are those who are poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Fortunate are those who mourn; they shall be comforted.
Fortunate are the gentle; they shall possess the land.
Fortunate are those who hunger and thirst for justice,
for they shall be satisfied.
Fortunate are the merciful, for they shall find mercy.
Fortunate are those with pure hearts, for they shall see God.
Fortunate are those who work for peace;
they shall be called children of God.
Fortunate are those who are persecuted for the
cause of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Fortunate are you, when people insult you and persecute you and speak all kinds of evil against you because you are my followers. Be glad and joyful, for a great reward is kept for you in God. For that is how this people persecuted the prophets who lived before you.
Fortune and misfortune are but matters of perception. Both contain the other. It is rather the meaning attached to them that is more important. And so what may patently seem a misfortune for a world that puts the self as the center becomes a source of blessedness for those who have no choice but to bear the hardships the world imposes upon them because they are the weak, the voiceless and those without power to defend their rights. When everything else fail and there is no one to turn to, trust in God to right the patently wrong. First, He will make it a source of blessing, of a capacity for patient endurance that does not quell the spirit of the person. Rather a resiliency and quiet strength is borne. Secondly, these people purified by their experience will begin to overrun the oppressive structure of society bringing with them the learning acquired from the experience. Lastly, there will be a new order that comes not from violent revolution but from the transformation that took place in the hearts and minds of God’s own little ones.