The challenge to be merciful to the criminal

For 30 January 2011, Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time, based on Mt 5:1-12

  When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain; and after he sat down, his disciples came to him. Then he began to speak, and taught them, saying:

  “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

  “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.

  “Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.

  “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.

  “Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy.

  “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.

  “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.

  “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

  “Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven.

Scripture passage from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Catholic Edition, copyright 1989, 1993, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Born in Western Victoria, Australia, 1940. Dominican Friar, have worked in Dominican Formation, in universities, parishes and currently on the Dominican Preaching Team around Aotearoa (New Zealand) and Australia. For those who enjoy cycling, or see that it is today perhaps ecologically necessary for most of us to get back on our bikes, consider it as a possible way of preaching! In 2005 I enjoyed making a bike pilgrimage for reconciliation between us White Australians and the Aboriginal people, riding 2,700km from Canberra the federal capital, to Uluru in the centre of the continent.