1 Thessalonians 2: 9-13.
Matthew 23: 27-32
In today’s gospel, Jesus makes clear that he has no time for imposters; for those who strive to appear what they are not.
Any of us can support fair and warranted criticism, but not if what we criticise is, in fact, our own weakness. In fact, very often, the behaviour we criticise may be typical of our own behaviour.
It is easy to parade ourselves seeking the approval or admiration of others; in fact, there is something typically human about that. But what is intolerable is to be hypocritical – presenting ourselves in a false way, making out that we are not only better than others but better than we ourselves really are.
It is a serious trap for those of us who are ministers to find fault in others while presenting ourselves as free of fault or hiding our vulnerability. How different it would be for those who fail or fall, if they found in us admission of our own weakness, our doubts and fears.
Jesus’ words to the Pharisees were fierce and uncompromising on the external show – beautiful, but inside, dead and decaying.
Let us hear that challenge today and be honest in our self-examination.
Brian Traynor CP has been involved in faith formation for many years especially in the form of parish missions and through the Passionist Family Group Movement. Brian is a member of the Passionist community at Holy Cross, Templestowe.