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PALM SUNDAY OF THE PASSION OF THE LORD

Jesus_The_Good_Shepherd_Byzantine_IconMy sisters and brothers in Christ,
This Palm Sunday we can focus our hearts and our minds once more on Jesus, our Savior. We come to celebrate this suffering and death because we know that through the life, suffering and death of Jesus, we have been saved from sin and death.
The second reading today, from the Letter to the Philippians, reflects this reality in one of the first Christian hymns. This hymn tells us that Jesus was willing to stoop down to us, God becoming human, in order to reach to the very heart of our human condition, becoming even a slave for us. Having taken on our flesh, our very humanity, He redeems all of us by His death and resurrection.
The images for this in Christian art show us Christ descending to hell in order to free all who had died without Him. Then He ascends to heaven and takes us all with Him–and yet leaves us free to choose Him.

RoseThe account of Christ’s Passion today, from the Gospel of Mark, gives us the human details of the final part of the life of Jesus, the details of His death. This death reflects the prophesy of Isaiah in the first reading: The Lord God is my help, therefore I am not disgraced; I have set my face like flint, knowing that I shall not be put to shame.
Come, let us worship the Lord, who has died so that we might live.

Father Jesus