Sunday, September 21, 2008

He came not to call the just, but sinners

For the Feast of St Matthew, which is celebrated today in the EF in the Canonical Circumscription in which I find myself, we see the Call of St Matthew. Our Lord tells the pharisees that he came not to call the just, but sinners.
It occurs to me that this is not something that was written to point out how snotty the pharisees were, but rather to warn Christians that they should not get their own noses in the air. There are horror stories from the Protestant world of people gasping as a man answers the altar call while toting cigarettes in his pocket (a sure sign that he couldn't be saved). Then we experience the charming love of many of our own as they begin to judge others in the Church. Some who are the most liturgically pious can be the most pharisaical when it comes to others. Hmmm. Weren't the pharisees the traddies of their day? Anyway, I digress.
It is a warning again and again to us not to be like those pharisees. Our liturgical piety should be forming us to make Christ present in the world. If it does not, than, I'd dare say, it is empty piety. Remember "Misericordiam volo et non sacrificium."

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