Palm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord

As we begin Holy Week with Palm Sunday, we commemorate our Lord’s passion and death.  In this celebration we see paradoxes at work between triumph and tragedy, and between rejoicing and rejection.

During the opening ceremonies we celebrate Christ’s triumphal entry into Jerusalem, then in the Gospel reading we read Mark’s version of the Passion.

What effect should these two remembrances have on us?  One effect is to reaffirm our faith in Jesus.  These people didn’t ask questions of Jesus like, “are you the one who is to come?” or “where did you get all this?” They simply exclaimed their faith in Him, “Hosanna!” and they expressed it in action by laying down their cloaks for Him.

Another effect Palm Sunday should have on us is to solidify our hope.  We live in a  world where death abounds in the midst of life.  Every day our news is filled with death because of war, domestic unrest, abortion, drug overdoses, suicides and hunger.

Nonetheless, the passion and resurrection of Jesus prove that life will prevail over death.  They give us hope that even when death  has done its worst, life will win out.  So with hope in our hearts, we continue to do life affirming things such as caring for the sick, helping the poor, ministering to the abandoned and working for peace.

Triumph and tragedy marked the life and death of Jesus.  In some degree or other they mark the life of every Christian’s journey to Jerusalem.  But we don’t have to just endure the tragic.  We can also triumph over it because of our faith and hope in Jesus.

God Bless

Msgr. Powell