Dear brothers and sisters, good morning! The Gospel of today (cf. Mt 23: 1-12) is set in the last days of Jesus' life in Jerusalem; days full of expectations and even tensions. On the one hand, Jesus poses severe criticism to the scribes and the Pharisees; on the other hand, he gives important deliveries to Christians of all times, so also to us. He tells the crowd: "In the chair of Moses the scribes and the Pharisees have sat down. Practice and observe everything they say. " This means that they have the authority to teach what is in conformity with the Law of God. However, immediately afterwards, Jesus adds: "But do not act according to their works, for they say and do not" (v. 2- 3). Brothers and sisters, a frequent defect in those who have authority, whether civil or ecclesiastical, is to demand from other things, even just, but they do not practice in person. They do double life. Jesus says, "They bind heavy and difficult barges on the shoulders of people, but they do not even want to move them with a finger" (v. 4). This attitude is a bad exercise of authority, which instead should have its first strength by the good example. Authority originates from a good example, to help others practice what is right and proper, sustaining them in the trials that meet on the path of good. Authority is a help, but if it is badly exercised, it becomes oppressive, does not let people grow and creates a climate of mistrust and hostility, and also leads to corruption.
Jesus openly denounces some negative behaviors of the scribes and some of the Pharisees: "They are filled with places of honor in banquets, early seats in the synagogues, greetings in the squares" (vv.6-7). This is a temptation that corresponds to human pride and that is not always easy to win. It is the attitude of living only for appearance. Then Jesus gives the deliverance to his disciples: "Do not call" rabbis, "because one is your Master and you are all brothers. [...] And do not call "guides," because one is your Guide, the Christ. Whoever among you is greater, will be your servant "(vv 8-11). We disciples of Jesus must not seek titles of honor, authority, or supremacy. I tell you that to me personally sorry to see people who are psychologically living by running behind the vanity of honors. We, the disciples of Jesus, must not do this, for there must be a simple and fraternal attitude among us. We are all brothers and we must in no way overwhelm others and look them down from below. We are all brothers. If we have received qualities from Heavenly Father, we must put it to the brethren, and not take advantage of it for our own satisfaction and personal interest. We must not consider ourselves superior to others; humility is essential for an existence that wants to conform to the teaching of Jesus, who is gentle and humble in heart and came not to be served but to serve. The Virgin Mary, "humble and high above the creature" (Dante, Paradise, XXXIII, 2), helps with her maternal intercession to escape from pride and vanity, and to be myths and docile to the love that it comes from God, for the service of our brothers and for their joy, which will also be ours.