Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A - 29th January 2023
Gospel Matthew 5: 1–12
Seeing the crowds, Jesus went up the hill. There he sat down and was joined by his disciples. Then he began to speak. This is what he taught them:
‘How happy are the poor in spirit; theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Happy the gentle: they shall have the earth for their heritage.
Happy those who mourn: they shall be comforted.
Happy those who hunger and thirst for what is right: they shall be satisfied.
Happy the merciful: they shall have mercy shown them.
Happy the pure in heart: they shall see God.
Happy the peacemakers: they shall be called children of God. Happy those who are persecuted in the cause of right: theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Happy are you when people abuse you and persecute you and speak all kinds of calumny against you on my account.
Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven.’
Gospel Reflection from St Beuno's Outreach
I become still, aware of the Lord’s presence with me, loving me just as I am. Perhaps I sense the warmth of his tender gaze upon me and rest with him for a few moments.
Then I read these very familiar ‘Beatitudes’ slowly and carefully, a number of times, taking them line by me, pausing wherever my attention is drawn. If it seems helpful, I may like to picture myself on the hill in front of Jesus, listening to his words as if for the first time.
In each Beatitude, I notice what is being promised and to whom. Perhaps I think of ‘happy’ as meaning blessed, favoured, fortunate...
Is there a ‘happiness’ or blessing that stands out for me?
Is there one I’d really like to have? Or perhaps a mixture of them?
What blessing(s) do I desire for my family and friends, my community, the world ...?
What blessings do I see in my own life? I thank God for what I’ve been given. How do I want to respond?
To whom can I be a blessing today?
I try to be conscious of the Lord being gently present to me as I ponder these questions with him.
When I feel ready, I slowly end my prayer, thanking the Lord for all his goodness. ‘Glory be ...’