First reading: Jer 17:5-8
Second reading: 1 Cor 15:12, 16-20
Gospel: Lk 6:17, 20-26
UNDERSTAND | By Father Greg Friedman, OFM
Over the years, I’ve had occasion to meet men and women who are single-minded in their pursuit of justice and their dedication to helping those on the margins of society. One thing most of these folks have in common is their ability to get right to the point.
That’s the feeling I get from the Gospel for this Sunday. We’re all familiar with Matthew’s presentation of Jesus’ “Sermon on the Mount.” Today, Luke offers us a sermon of Jesus as well. But the setting isn’t a mountainside. Rather, the Lord stands on a stretch of level ground.
And Luke’s version of Christ’s “Beatitudes” is also different from Matthew’s. They’re shorter, more direct, and focus more on the physical reality of poverty. In Matthew, Jesus speaks of the “poor in spirit”; in Luke he says, “Blessed are you who are poor.” And the blessings are quickly followed by a list of woes for those who are rich and satisfied.
Luke’s Gospel overall is known for a focus on the poor. The fact of enduring poverty or other troubles seems to offer a perspective on God which helps us realize that we need to depend on God for everything. That’s a challenging message, one that we nevertheless need to hear. And we can thank Luke for capturing that part of what Jesus came to proclaim.
DISCUSS | By Father Dan Kroger, OFM
In the first reading, what does the Lord say to Jeremiah about the cursed person?
According to this week’s second reading, how does Paul feel about Jesus’ resurrection?
In the Gospel, Luke first reports four blessed ones—you poor, you hungry, you weeping, you hated.
Then he gives four woes. What is the difference between a blessing and a woe?
ACT | By Susan Hines-Brigger
Create a plan as a family for ways that you can live out what Jesus talks about in this week’s Gospel. For instance, how can you help to satisfy the hungry or comfort those who have been excluded or insulted? After you come up with a plan, put it into action.