“Entering into the Holy Week with a deep desire to love the Lord, and to be faithful in our commitment to His Kingdom!”
(Based on Palm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord)
Many of us would have read the following, with a picture of Jesus Christ crucified…
“I asked Jesus, how much do you love me?”
And Jesus answered, “This much”
And He extended His arms on the cross…
But there’s a sequel to this, which perhaps is not known much, but is worth reflecting on…
Jesus then asked me, “How much do you love me”
I picked up the hammer and the nails….saying, “This is how much I love You!”
… and began to crucify Him!
The Passion of the Lord is a result of our sins…
The Crucifixion of the Lord is a consequence of our disobedience…
As Isaiah would say, “Surely He has borne our grief and carried our sorrows” (Is 53:4)
On this Palm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord, one of the important thoughts we can reflect is, “what made Jesus, the most popular person on this Sunday (Palm Sunday) to become the most hated person by Friday (Good Friday)?”
The donkey (colt) perhaps gives us the clue.
In Biblical times, horses were used when a king rode to war, whereas donkeys were used to signal a time of peace.
King Solomon rode on his father, David’s donkey (Cf. 1 Kgs 1:33)
Zechariah prophesies a time of peace as the King rides on a donkey (Cf. Zech 9:9-10)
Jesus, the Prince of Peace, enters Jerusalem, the City of Peace, in humility and lowliness on a donkey, and would soon be mounted on the Cross…
… Cross, the sign of God’s new, true rainbow which connects the heavens and the earth
… Cross, the sign of reconciliation, of forgiveness, a sign of love that is stronger than death.
By making a ‘grand entry’ on the donkey, Jesus shatters every false notion that had been clouding the minds of the people, who thought He would be the political Messiah
He presents Himself as the Lamb of God, Who is to be sacrificed.
It is interesting to note when Jesus asked for the donkey (colt), He made a statement “The Lord has NEED of it!” (Lk 19:31)
Did the Lord of the universe NEED something?
But this is the Divine Paradox, wherein the Divine lowers Himself to invite humanity to partake of Divine Life!
And today, this Divine Paradox is inviting all of us and telling us: I need you!
What is our response?
Very often, we give many excuses… and we may feel….
… we are still too young (like Prophet Jeremiah)
… we are already old (like Abraham, the father of Faith)
… we are useless and not talented (like Moses, who would lead the people through the Exodus)
… we are sinful (like Isaiah and Peter who confessed their unworthiness)
… we are not considered favoured in the eyes of God (like Elizabeth and Zechariah)
… we are having a bad past filed with mistakes (like St Paul and St Augustine)
The Lord assures us that if we offer our lives, He will make come into us! (Cf. Rev 3:20)
Many of us are just happy to be part of the “city crowd”…
… remain there and once in a way, shout Hosanna, and be happy!
But the Lord says: Leave the city, and climb Calvary
He who wishes to follow me, must deny, take up the cross daily and follow – Mt 16:24
We must realise… Christianity without the Cross is impossible…
No Cross, no crown!
No wounds, No blessings!
No offering, no happiness!
We have the palms with us now – they are fresh and green.
But in a few days, they will turn dry.
It is easy to sing and shout Hosanna when everything is fresh and green.
But can we keep the same spirit, even when things dry up…
… or will we end up saying, Crucify Him!
Let us try to make this week, a “holy week” indeed…
… by making a confession of our sins
… be taking a decision to read the Bible every day, without fail
… by spending time with Jesus, in personal prayer, every day
… by repairing some relationships from which we keep away
Wish you a Blessed Holy Week!
God Bless! Live Jesus!
📖 Discovering the beauty of the Catholic Church through the Catechism
THE HOLY SPIRIT PREPARES FOR THE RECEPTION OF CHRIST
In the sacramental economy, the Holy Spirit fulfils what was prefigured in the Old Covenant.
Since Christ’s Church was “prepared in marvellous fashion in the history of the people of Israel and in the Old Covenant”
The Church’s liturgy has retained certain elements of the worship of the Old Covenant as integral and irreplaceable, adopting them as her own:
- notably, reading the Old Testament;
- praying the Psalms;
- above all, recalling the saving events and significant realities which have found their fulfilment in the mystery of Christ (promise and covenant, Exodus and Passover, kingdom and temple, exile and return).
It is on this harmony of the two Testaments that the Paschal catechesis of the Lord is built, and then, that of the Apostles and the Fathers of the Church.
This catechesis unveils what lay hidden under the letter of the Old Testament: the mystery of Christ. It is called “typological” because it reveals the newness of Christ on the basis of the “figures” (types) which announce him in the deeds, words, and symbols of the first covenant.
By this re-reading in the Spirit of Truth, starting from Christ, the figures are unveiled.
Thus the flood and Noah’s ark prefigured salvation by Baptism, as did the cloud and the crossing of the Red Sea.
Water from the rock was the figure of the spiritual gifts of Christ, and manna in the desert prefigured the Eucharist, “the true bread from heaven.”
For this reason the Church, especially during Advent and Lent and above all at the Easter Vigil, re-reads and re-lives the great events of salvation history in the “today” of her liturgy.
But this also demands that catechesis help the faithful to open themselves to this spiritual understanding of the economy of salvation as the Church’s liturgy reveals it and enables us to live it. (CCC # 1093-1095)