will be liable to judgment,
and whoever says to his brother,
will be answerable to the Sanhedrin,
and whoever says, 'You fool,' will be liable to fiery Gehenna. Mt 5
Which of us in anger or frustration has not once, at least in our head, used an undesirable name for someone who bothers us? And we recall with amusement that the epithet, Raqa, literally means "blockhead." But in God's kingdom, there is no place for name-calling. Jesus begs us to respect and reverence one another, no matter what we have suffered at their hands.
Lord Jesus, teach us to be gentle and accepting, to swallow the bitter remark and instead give a blessing.
Photograph of the Abbey scriptorium by Brother Brian.