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A team of 200 priests comment on daily Gospel

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Liturgical day: Wednesday 23rd in Ordinary Time

1st Reading (Col 3:1-11): Brothers and sisters: If you were raised with Christ, seek what is above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Think of what is above, not of what is on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ your life appears, then you too will appear with him in glory.

Put to death, then, the parts of you that are earthly: immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and the greed that is idolatry. Because of these the wrath of God is coming upon the disobedient. By these you too once conducted yourselves, when you lived in that way. But now you must put them all away: anger, fury, malice, slander, and obscene language out of your mouths. Stop lying to one another, since you have taken off the old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed, for knowledge, in the image of its creator. Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all and in all.
Responsorial Psalm: 144
R/. The Lord is compassionate toward all his works.
Every day will I bless you, and I will praise your name forever and ever. Great is the Lord and highly to be praised; his greatness is unsearchable.

Let all your works give you thanks, o Lord, and let your faithful ones bless you. Let them discourse of the glory of your Kingdom and speak of your might.

Making known to men your might and the glorious splendor of your Kingdom. Your Kingdom is a Kingdom for all ages, and your dominion endures through all generations.
Versicle before the Gospel (Lk 6:23): Alleluia. Rejoice and leap for joy! Your reward will be great in heaven. Alleluia.

Gospel text (Lk 6,20-26): Lifting up his eyes to his disciples, Jesus said, «Fortunate are you who are poor, the kingdom of God is yours. Fortunate are you who are hungry now, for you will be filled. Fortunate are you who weep now, for you will laugh. Fortunate are you when people hate you, when they reject you and insult you and number you among criminals, because of the Son of Man. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, for a great reward is kept for you in heaven. Remember that is how the ancestors of this people treated the prophets.

»But alas for you who have wealth, for you have been comforted now. Alas for you who are full, for you will go hungry. Alas for you who laugh now, for you will mourn and weep. Alas for you when people speak well of you, for that is how the ancestors of these people treated the false prophets».

«Fortunate are you who are poor. Alas for you who have wealth»

Fr. Joaquim MESEGUER García
(Rubí, Barcelona, Spain)

Today, Jesus points out where the true happiness lies in our lives. In Luke's version, beatitudes are accompanied by painful wails for those who do not accept the message of salvation, but prefer to stick to a self-sufficient and selfish life. With the beatitudes and wails, Jesus applies the doctrine of the two paths: the path of life and the fact of death. There is not a third and neutral possibility: he who does not follow the path of life is heading for the path of death; who does not follow the light, lives in darkness.

«Fortunate are you who are poor, the Kingdom of God is yours!» (Lk 6:29). This beatitude is the basis of all the others, because who is poor will be able to get the Kingdom of God as a gift. He who is poor will realize he must be hungry and thirsty: not of material things, but of the Word of God; not of power, but of love and justice. Who is poor will be able to cry over the world's sufferings. Who is poor, will know that God is all his wealth and, because of that, the world will not understand him and will harass him.

«But alas for you who have wealth, for you have been comforted now!» (Lk 6:24). This wail is also the basis for all the others: because who is rich and self-sufficient, who does not know how to place his wealth at the service of others, he just confines himself to his own selfishness and works out his own misfortune. May God deliver us from the thirst of riches, from going after this world's promises and from placing our heart in material things; may God deliver us from taking any pleasure in human praise and adulation, for that would mean we have placed our heart in the world's glory rather than in the Glory of Jesus Christ. It will be profitable for us to remember what St. Basil said: «Whomever loves his neighbor as he loves himself should not have more than his neighbor does (…) then everyone will share their goods and spend them on themselves».