Posts Tagged ‘Palm Sunday’

Palm Sunday
 The Beginning of Holy Week
By Sister Marie Paul Grech

The beginning of Holy Week…sometimes called Palm Sunday, sometimes called Passion Sunday….but which is it?

Typical of our day-to-day experiences, life is filled with multiple names for things, and each name has a different story to tell. When we focus on Palm Sunday, for example,  we direct our attention to the glorious reception Jesus receives from a fickle crowd, a crowd composed perhaps of many of the same people who, less than a week later, would call out for his crucifixion.


When we focus on Passion Sunday, we fix our gaze on that which is yet to come: the humiliating execution of an innocent man. Yet are not both true? Do not both co-exist and call us to a broader understanding of Jesus, the Son of God who deserves the glory and honor, and the Son of Man who gives up everything to be one of us, especially in our suffering? Isn’t this a reality that we deal with all the time? We are called to live in the world, but not be of the world. We are called to work and to pray. We are called to pray in silence and to pray in community. We are called to work for the kingdom and to trust in God’s action in our lives.

There is no either/or in our following of Jesus, only both/and. We are called to follow Jesus on the road to Calvary, while never forgetting the joys of the Transfiguration. We speak the words, “Crucify Him” with dread and guilt, and yet we know that it is our sins that he carries. We are gifted with discipleship, knowing that like Peter there are days we act as though we do not know him. Palms and Passion are two sides of the same coin. One calls to holiness of life, and one calls to celebration and gratitude for all that our good God has given us through his Son, Jesus Christ.

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Jesus directed his disciples to go into town, find a colt, untie it, and bring it to him. Jesus knew how he wanted to use the colt, to make it his mount for his entry into Jerusalem, to make it his means of taking the next step on his journey back to his Father. The colt had to be untied, set free, so that Jesus could use it.

Each of us has gifts from God. Sometimes they are locked inside or buried beneath our busy lives. Jesus calls us to release those gifts and bring them forward. There are others who could benefit from our being willing and able to make our gifts available. It might be the smile hidden behind a concern, a kind word buried beneath an aching heart, a helpful hand busied in idle activity. Untie them. Set them free. Bring them to Jesus so that he can lighten the load of another on their journey to the Father. In the process we in turn are made free.


Sister Mary Ruth Lubbers, SND Covington Province

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