Commentary on the Gospel of

Paulson Veliyannoor, CMF

“Why do you notice the splinter in your brother's eye, but do not perceive the wooden beam in your own?”  It is so, because I do not want to! It is so inconvenient to turn the gaze on to myself or to look into a mirror that would relay back to me who I truly am! It is far easier going around fixing the world than fixing myself.

There is a little story about two men meeting in a street. Tom, while walking along the road, sees another guy and suddenly runs to him and throws his arms around him and exclaims: “Hey, Jerry! So long since we met last! But what happened to you? You were so stout, but you have become thin now; you were so short, but you are very tall now! You were European then, but now you look like an Australian! You have changed a lot!”  The other guy somehow frees himself from the hug and with no little embarrassment, says: “Sorry, sir. I am not Jerry, I am Steve.” And Tom exclaims: “O my! You changed your name too?”

Funny as it is, the story somehow speaks to us. We are, unfortunately, more like Tom. We simply cannot see that it is we who are mistaken, not the other; because, recognizing that we are wrong would mean we need to change our way of seeing, thinking, and acting.

Even at the Holy Mass, we hardly pause after the invitation at the penitential rite, “let us call to mind our sins,” and we simply launch into “I confess…” without even bothering to unearth things to confess!  Often times, the celebrant is to blame, because he does not provide the pause for people to review their life! We need to get back to the golden practice of “examen of conscience” that was once  practiced by laity and religious alike. On a daily basis. Then we would know what to fix within ourselves so that we can bear the good fruits—the fruits of the Spirit. 

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