Mk 7:1-13 Sick of Lip Service

When the Pharisees with some scribes who had come from Jerusalem gathered around Jesus, they observed that some of his disciples ate their meals with unclean, that is, unwashed, hands…So the Pharisees and scribes questioned him, “Why do your disciples not follow the tradition of the elders but instead eat a meal with unclean hands?”  Jesus responded, “Well did Isaiah prophesy about your hypocrites, as it is written:  ‘This people honors me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me; in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines human precepts.’  You disregard God’s commandments but cling to human traditions.”
We often consider our man-made “commandments” to be more important than our God-made commandments.  For example, we consider our “commandment” to be tolerant more sacred than the truth.  How is that?  Does tolerance unite people or does truth?  Does accepting people for who they are unite us or does love unite us?  My experience has shown me that tolerance is like détente and the tolerant are like wolves in sheep’s clothing, waiting for the right moment to attack.  
The command to be tolerant stands on one leg and in sand, for it doesn’t take much time or effort for tolerance to sink into hatred and prejudice.  In fact, I can tell you that when someone claims to be very tolerant, I often get a little nervous, for those who claim to be very tolerant are typically extremely anti-Catholic. 
The first mistake I made this morning was to pick up the Dallas Morning News (the DaMN) from the ground.  I should have left it there.  The second mistake I made was to read its top story regarding the Holy Father’s resignation.  I have to admit to all of you that I was surprised at how negative the article was towards the Holy Father.  I was no longer surprised when I read who wrote it:  Laurie Goodstein of the New York Times. 
When most high-profile people suddenly step down, you would think that a newspaper reporter would be sniffing around to find out why.  Not this highly-biased writer!  What Ms. Goodstein finds newsworthy about the Pope is what is most damning to the Pope.  Now imagine for a moment if President Obama suddenly resigned from the Presidency.  What reporter wouldn’t be asking why?  Who wouldn’t be looking for sources closest to the President for answers?  So wouldn’t it surprise you if the DaMN wrote an article exclusively about all the President’s “failures” (ballooning deficit, high unemployment, high gas prices, poll after poll indicating that most Americans are not at all optimistic about the future)?  Wouldn’t it surprise you if they gave equal space to his critics?  Wouldn’t you take offense if they personally blamed him for the death of our ambassador in Libya and for anger among Muslims due to drone attacks?  Wouldn’t it shock you if they mocked him and almost “blamed” him for all the things that went terribly wrong during his tenure:  the Secret Service scandal, the GSA scandal, the Petraeus scandal, the Benghazi cover-up, etc.?  Yes.  You would never expect them to do that!  But when it came to the Pope, the DaMN, through Laurie Goodstein and the New York Times, did just that.  They blamed him for just about everything:  the death of a nun in Somalia; creating anger among Muslims by speaking the truth; and for clerics who said stupid things and did criminal things.    
The DaMN prides itself in doing serious investigative reporting.  To overcome its growth stunt, it’s come up with a new publicity stunt.  It’s begun to advertise itself using bloodhounds.  If you drive on I-35, you can see one of their billboard ads showing some bloodhounds searching for what you would think (and hope for) would be the truth.  (The bloodhounds represent their reporters.)  Well, after reading so many of their articles, it appears as though these dogs are not searching for the truth but simply returning to their vomit.
Aren’t you sick of false ads and lip service? 


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Fr. Alfonse (1044 Posts)

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