Byzantine icon of Jesus entering Jerusalem on Palm Sunday

Byzantine icon of Jesus entering Jerusalem on Palm Sunday

As a Catholic we are now coming to the most important part of the liturgical year, Holy Week, which begins today with Palm Sunday. This is the week which recounts Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem, his trial by Pontius Pilate, his death by crucifixion and, most important of all, his resurrection from the dead. I have to say that every Palm Sunday Mass I have ever attended has always been rich in connotation and spiritual significance. There is a real and antique beauty to the Catholic liturgical year. This is one of the things I love about the Catholic Church: the sense of liturgy, of participation in a great spiritual drama that is both moving, deeply significant and eternal. We participate not only in the here and now, but we also participate in the eternal drama of the life of Christ, of the world changing movement that began 2,000 years ago, and we do so with all those who have gone before us, who have also participated in these same religious movements. The world has changed much since Christ walked on this earth, but the story and message of His life remain the same: redemption, forgiveness for sins, and brotherly love.  Palm Sunday is only one of two days throughout the year (the other being Good Friday) that we hear the Gospel readings of the Crucifixion. This makes the Crucifixion narrative even that much more powerful. The palm leaves that are distributed before Mass always add a tactile, almost exotic feature to the liturgical movement.

Lent is now over and Holy Week begins. This Lent has been mostly good, with a few ups and downs and the usual struggles.  I did not pray as much as I would have liked and my contentions with certain Church doctrines continue. Faith is not always an easy thing.

Still, I must continue on the journey. I cannot live a full life without God.