Jesus is believed to have given the Sermon on the Mount here, on a low hill near Tabgha.
Then he looked up at his disciples and said:
“Blessed are you who are poor,
for yours is the kingdom of God.
“Blessed are you who are hungry now,
for you will be filled.
“Blessed are you who weep now,
for you will laugh.
“Blessed are you when people hate you, and when they exclude you, revile you, and defame you[a] on account of the Son of Man. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, for surely your reward is great in heaven; for that is what their ancestors did to the prophets.
“But woe to you who are rich,
for you have received your consolation.
“Woe to you who are full now,
for you will be hungry.
“Woe to you who are laughing now,
for you will mourn and weep.
“Woe to you when all speak well of you, for that is what their ancestors did to the false prophets.
~ Luke 6:20-26
The octagonal-shaped Church of the Beatitudes (to symbolize the eight beatitudes) was constructed by the noted architect Antonio Barluzzi and is full of numerical symbolism, such as the one noted above.
In front of the church, the symbols on the pavement represent Justice, Prudence, Fortitude, Charity, Faith and Temperance.
The Church that stands today was built by the Franciscan Sisters in 1938 on the hilltop.
Inside, Pope Paul VI left his cloak for permanent display in the church after his 1964 pilgrimage. The Mount of Beatitudes is also the spot where thousands of Catholics gathered in March 2000 to celebrate a Mass with St. Pope John Paul II
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[b] on my account. 12 Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
~ Matthew 5:1-11
This last image that Father Peter has shared with us truly highlights our Beloved Pastor…