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It All Begins Here

But I say this to you who are listening: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you
I Samuel 26:2,7-9,12-13,22-23; Psalm 103:1-4,8,10,12-13; I Corinthians 15:45-49; Luke 6:27-38

Sermon Week Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time Cycle C

Scripture Summary Luke 6:27

In a book called "Entertaining Angels," the author cites a survey conducted by a major advertising agency. According to the report (entitled "Fears and Fantasies of the American Consumer"), about seventy-five percent of Americans have daydreamed about saving someone else's life, and fully one-third of the population has daydreamed about finding a cure for cancer. But when it came to the question, "What is the greatest pleasure in life," the most popular answer was, "Watching television." Television topped the list. We would love to be good, it seems, just as long as it doesn't inconvenience us. It's one thing to dream about being good, and another to be good for something.

A few years ago, the pollster George Gallup was asked to comment on what his polls were saying about "the correct state of religion in America." He said, in part ...

The two major trends really are a search for depth in our society -- people seeking spiritual moorings -- and the search for relationships. People need to rediscover each other. We are fragmented. Families have split apart.

Mr. Gallup went on to describe many American Church-goers as assenters rather than believers:

They assent to faith. They assent to the beliefs which one is meant to believe, but they don't necessarily believe them. If you consider that a belief is something to be acted upon, then these people are merely paying lip-service to what they think they should believe. If people were truly as religious as they say, the ethical nature of our society would be vastly different.

Take it from Jesus: If we were truly as religious as we say -- if we were truly integrating our faith into our lives -- if we were to take His command seriously to treat others as we would like them to treat us -- if we were to hear the "Sermon on the Mount" as a call to action, we would experience the fulfillment of Jesus' promise that "Your joy will be complete" (Jn. 15:11).

In today's Gospel Lesson, Jesus' "Sermon on the Mount" gives us a magnificent picture of what the good, whole, fulfilled [...]

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