Mountain top

8 Steps To Happiness According to Jesus

by Father Brian J. Soliven on Sunday January 29, 2023

The next time you are in a Catholic church, pay attention to where the altar is built. No matter what church you walk into, whether you're in the jungle of Sao Paulo, Brazil, a Gothic cathedral in Paris, or a suburban parish in rural Dixon, you’ll soon notice a familiar pattern. The altar is always built on a raised platform. The only way to get to it is by climbing stairs. Even if it’s only one step or an entire flight, like the Basilica of St. Peter’s in Vatican City, you always have to ascend upwards. Why? The answer is found in the gospel this Sunday.

Mountains are places of encounter with the true God. As Jesus ascends the mountain to teach the eight beatitudes, the message is clear to the Jewish audience. God has come.