Readings: Lv 19:1-2, 17-18, Ps 103:1-2, 3-4, 8, 10, 12-13, 1 Cor 3:16-23, Mt 5:38-48

We continue for the fourth straight week with Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount. On the Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time, we heard Jesus proclaim the beatitudes. Since then, each Sunday Jesus has enlarged on the general statements of the beatitudes by concrete examples. Today we hear about revenge and love of one’s enemies. The supreme law of love proclaimed in the first reading (Leviticus 19:1–2,17–18), is intensified by the Gospel message about loving one’s enemies.

The neighbor referred to in Leviticus was understood to be the one in my country. The enemy in Matthew as the persecutor, was probably a reflection of the Church at that time. Jesus calls his hearers to extend their love to all and to be like the heavenly Father who gives sun and rain to all—bad and good, just and unjust. Truly a revolutionary invitation at that time and perhaps in ours as well.

—Sister Dominica Rocchio, SC

Sr. Dominica, most recently a member of the Congregation’s leadership team, has ministered in education as a teacher, principal, and in administrative positions in the archdioceses of New York and Newark, NJ. In Newark, she served as Superintendent of Schools and Secretary for Education. At present, she works on Special Projects for the Congregation.