There was one Saturday when there were so many people who came to Mass. The number was so great that the people standing reached all the way to the area in front of the lectern.
The gospel then was about the Pharisee and the tax collector, the publican. In my homily, I uncharitably lambasted the Pharisees and I told those listening that the Pharisees should not be emulated. I said that the Pharisees were hypocritical and that they did not know how to acknowledge that they were sinners.
After I said my last sentence, which was quite abrupt, I replaced the microphone in its holder. It was when I noticed the woman who was standing right in front of the lectern heave a deep sign and audibly remarked, “Thanks be to God, I’m not like the Pharisee.
We have something of the Pharisee in us. If we think somebody is less deserving to go to Communion than us that is pharisaical. If we think somebody should not go to Communion while we are qualified to go to Communion, does not that attitude reveal the Pharisee in us? If we think somebody goes to Mass because that person just wants to make friends or has a crush on the priest, while we are better qualified to go to Mass because our intentions are pure, isn’t that something of a Pharisee in us?
The sad thing about being a Pharisee is this: it is very easy to recognize the Pharisee In other people but it is very difficult to consider ourselves one.
I, THE PHARISEE
Jesus In My Heart