Thursday, 19 July 2012 14:05
“Blessed are the poor in spirit,” Jesus says to the throngs as he begins his Sermon on the Mount, the first sermon in Matthew’s gospel.
Our Lord goes on to name seven additional blessings (beatitudines) regarding the meek, hungry, peacemakers and others.
Marcus Grodi is going to talk about how the beatitudes can make a difference in a person’s life when he visits Wichita during the Midwest Catholic Family Conference Aug. 3-5 at Century II.
Speaking from his office in Zanesville, Ohio, Grodi said the beatitudes “especially as they were taught by some
of the early church fathers, are presented as a staircase of conversion, as a pathway to growth in union with our Lord Jesus.”
Best known for hosting the Journey Home program on EWTN, Grodi said he and his staff are heavily involved with assisting persons in converting to Catholicism in an authentic walk of faith.
He said the beatitudes are seen as qualities or experiences in life we seek to be close to God.
“Some of the early fathers saw them as consecutive steps of conversion,” he said. “That’s what I will be discussing. And how our Lord in fact was communicating to his audience the journey that we all need to go through beginning with poverty of spirit which is really detachment as we move closer to our Lord.”
Grodi, a convert and a former Presbyterian minister, said he is not a scholar nor an academic. “My main goal, especially with my pastoral background is, ‘OK, what does this say about our lives? How can it make a difference in our lives?’”
He said many are attempting to live simpler lives in these complicated times when the culture is challenging us.
“Our Lord cuts through it all and calls us to be, to a certain extent, simplistic and detached from the fast-moving stream around us,” Grodi said.
He added that he will talk about how he and his family are detaching themselves from the culture on their small central Ohio farm.