judas kiss - smallWritten by: Fr. Mike Simoes

In our call to a friendship with Christ, we must come to realize that not all of our friends are there to help us develop our friendship with Christ. Sometimes, we might be that person that is a false friend to another.

There are many types of false friends who lead us astray, or who we have led astray through our own faults. “The first kind of false friend is one who is a friend ‘when it suits him.’ This is a person who is a friend for the sake of convenience.”[1] They are friends of utility, always seeking some use from you and what they can gain. These types of friendships are motivated by selfishness. The second type of false friend is a  “fair weather friend” who “will not stand by you in your day of trouble.”[2] This is a different type of selfish friend. They do not want to put up with the demands of inconvenience that could be encountered in a friendship. During the times when you need a friend to help you, these false friends are not around to give much needed support.

These selfish friends, and we too can be selfish friends, must remember that when we act like this, we hurt our relationship with Christ and we are an obstacle to another becoming a friend of Christ. When we fail to treat everyone by their dignity as human persons made in the image and likeness of God, we fail to love Christ, “who fully reveals man to man himself.”[3]

The last type of false friend is one “who changes into an enemy.”[4] These types of friends are the ones that betray your confidence. This type of betrayal will hurt deeply. With true friends, there is a bond of trust.

We must remember that Jesus was betrayed by His “friend” Judas. He betrays Him with a sign of friendship, a kiss. This must have added to the pain that Christ felt in His passion. The example of Judas betraying Jesus in the garden of Gethsemene is right after he had received the sacrament of love, the Eucharist. Jesus called all the 12 apostles who ate the meal with Him friends and no longer servants. But from here Judas leaves and does not follow the commandments that God has given us to love Him and to love one another. He lost that place and that title. Yet, Peter is no better when he denies Jesus, who had just called him a friend. He rejects Jesus and is unable to follow the commandments of God. We must be aware of these falls that we have in our life: those times when we betrayed Jesus in our sinfulness or those times when we denied Jesus because we were afraid. Although we are weak and we have sinned, Jesus still desires a friendship with us. We can either be like Judas and reject that call and kill ourselves (spiritually) or we can be like Peter and repent.

[1] Fr. Andrew Apostoli, When God Asks for an Undivided Heart, 155

[2] Ibid., 155

[3] Gaudium et Spes, #22

[4] Ibid., 155



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