Saint Zephaniah ~ Blessed Are The Poor In Spirit

During the Fourth Sunday of Ordinary Time, Year A, you will hear a passage from the Prophet and Saint, Zephaniah (Feast Day - December 3) at mass.  Zephaniah lived about 600 years before the time of Christ and was very distressed ... he so wanted all people of Judah to fully live for God.  But, many had become distracted and very unfaithful.

So, Zephaniah tried scaring his people with dire warnings.  Most of his book, actually, has a rather frightening tone.  But, there are a few hopeful chunks that commend those of a humble spirit.  It is these portions of praise for the gentle and God-loving that will be read at mass tomorrow.

Very appropriately, the Responsorial Psalm (Ps. 146:6-10), Second Reading (1 Cor. 1:26-31), and Gospel (Mt. 5:1-12) for this Sunday also honor the lowly, the just,  the oppressed, and the meek.

I guess it is a good day to thank God for times of humiliation and indignity.  It is those uncomfortable life experiences that can often bring us closer to God.

Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time - Year A
Lectionary: 70

ZEPHANIAH 2:3; 3:12-13

Reading 1

Seek the LORD, all you humble of the earth,
who have observed his law;
seek justice, seek humility;
perhaps you may be sheltered
on the day of the LORD's anger.

But I will leave as a remnant in your midst
a people humble and lowly,
who shall take refuge in the name of the LORD:
the remnant of Israel.
They shall do no wrong
and speak no lies;
nor shall there be found in their mouths
a deceitful tongue;
they shall pasture and couch their flocks
with none to disturb them.