Pope Francis on March 3, 2019, unpacked the several parables of the day’s gospel, Luke 6: 39-45. His remarks preceded the praying of the noonday Angelus with the large crowd of pilgrims from around the world gathered in St. Peter’ Square.
The gospel is just six verses, but includes some of the most famous parables of Jesus:
- “Can a blind man lead a blind man?”
- “Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?”
- “For no good tree bears bad fruit, nor again does a bad tree bear good fruit; for each tree is known by its fruit”
What is the message Jesus has for his followers? The Holy Father explained:
“He wishes to stress that a guide can’t be blind, but must see well, namely, he must have the wisdom to guide with wisdom, otherwise he risks causing harm to the persons who entrust themselves to him. So Jesus calls the attention of all those that have educative responsibility or of command: Pastors of souls, public authorities, lawmakers, teachers, parents, exhorting them to be aware of their delicate role and to always discern the right way on which to lead people.
“So many times, we all know it, it’s easier and more comfortable to see and condemn the defects and sins of others, without being able to see our own with as much lucidity.
“The fruit is actions, but also words. Also from words, one knows the quality of the tree.”
The Pope stressed the importance of speaking well of others. He suggested that speaking badly of others destroys the family, school, workplace, and community.
“Wars begin from the tongue,” Francis said. “Let us think a bit about this teaching of Jesus and ask ourselves the question: do I speak badly of others? Do I always try to soil others? Is it easier for me to see the defects of others than my own? And let us try to correct ourselves at least a bit: it will do us all good.”