Spy Wednesday, 2020


Today is the day the Church commemorates -- well, remembers-- Judas' selling Jesus out.  The start of the reading from mass (Mt 26:14, ff) tells us: 

One of the Twelve, who was called Judas Iscariot,went to the chief priests and said,“What are you willing to give meif I hand him over to you?”They paid him thirty pieces of silver,and from that time on he looked for an opportunity to hand him over.

"What will you give me?" Was there a haggling process -- an opening bid that was too low? If so, why stop at 30?

I also got to thinking, as the lector was reading, that once Judas acceded to the bargain, the thought consumed him. What was he looking for as he went about his day? Opportunities for betrayal. Ordinarily we ought not judge a man by a single act in his long life. But Judas really transformed himself into "the Betrayer." He spent his final days looking for opportunities to betray. 

don't know that I have even a half-baked thought about this, but I've been spending Lent w/ Card. Newman, who is keen that we should see our sins as repugnant, and love Jesus too much not to leave them aside. 

On the flip side -- that of fidelity-- here is a bittersweet reflection from Randall Smith on the price of discipleship

I posed the same question about whether it was prudent or foolish for the villagers in the little French town of Le Chambon to hide literally thousands of Jewish refugees during the Second World War while the German army was hunting them down and deporting them to concentration camps.A young woman had come into the classroom that morning exclaiming about Magda Trocmé, the village pastor’s wife and one of the leaders of this conspiracy of goodness:  “I love that woman!  I want to be that woman!”When the question of whether the villagers had been foolish to take in the Jews came up, I asked her whether she thought they had been foolish.  “Oh yes,” she said, “definitely.”  “But I thought you said you wanted to be like Magda?”  “I do,” she replied.  “So you want to be like a foolish woman?” I asked.  “Yes,” she said, “because she was foolish in the right way.”
Lord, help me to be foolish in the right way.

P.S. The Judas Trees in our neighborhood are in bloom and very pretty. You wouldn't know we were in the middle of a pandemic.