One of the big words that jumped out of the Gospel today as I reflected upon it was “hypocrite”.
I remember reading a funny but true story about hypocrite. A lady wrote this story as follows:
I was driving home one day with my sons when my 5-year-old asked,
“Mom, what’s a hypocrite?”
I explained that a hypocrite was someone who criticized something you were doing while they are doing the same things themselves.
He nodded and said, “Well, why did you say that great-grandpa was a hypocrite?” I said, “Son, I never said great-grandpa was a hypocrite.”
My oldest said, “Oh, yes you did! I remember!” My five year old said, ” You did, Mom, I heard you.”
I could never remember saying anything remotely like that about my husband’s grandfather, whom I love like my own, but my sons seemed convinced. I asked, “When did I ever say anything like that?”
The 5-year-old said, “You said great grandpa would vote for Al Gore because he was a hypocrite.”
I quickly corrected, “No, no I said he would vote for Al Gore because he was a DEMOCRAT!”
“Oh, yeah, that’s right,” they said.
I’m glad they said something to me about it before they told great-grandpa.
I remember hearing my scripture professor sharing that when someone came to her saying: I feel that I sometimes behave like a hypocrite, she would reply: “My dear friend, welcome to the club of hypocrites. We are all hypocrites.” Yes, whether we are a democrat or a republican or whomever, we are all hypocrites to some extent. Our inside and our outside don’t always match. Therefore, this Gospel is a good reminder for us, you and me, that we always need God’s help everyday and in every situation to be purified of our hypocrisy. Let us pray that we have the grace we need to be true or more true to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Joseph Viet, O.Carm.