Palm Sunday is one of the most popular Sundays of the year. Many people come back to Church in order to receive their palms. But, why do we receive palms today?
It’s because Our Lord Jesus was praised by the people waving palms when He entered into Jerusalem. Palms are symbolic of peace and victory in the ancient world. In many ways Jesus’s entry into Jerusalem is the kind of procession a king would do when returning victorious in battle or on some other special occasion. He is honored by the whole crowd and palms represent that we honor Him who actually brings peace to the world.
However, Our Lord also subverts the meaning of this procession. It is like He is living out one of His parables that always have an unexpected twist in the middle. Instead of riding a stately horse, He rides a humble donkey. Instead of entering His throne, He then immediately leaves the city. He does not come to His throne until He goes to the cross and it is there that He is recognized as King.
Our Lord is not the King of this world because this world does not recognize Him. He is a suffering servant King, not a worldly one. He is a sign of that humility all Christians should have in the face of the evil of this world. An earthly King would rule by force and eventually his rule will come to an end. This King reigns in our hearts and His kingdom will never end.
I have a couple good announcements as we enter into this Holy Week:
- First, congratulations to all our students who received the Sacrament of Confirmation this week. I like to think of Confirmation as a completion of your Baptism. While at Baptism you receive the graces of being a child of God and salvation, these graces are activated and directed toward a vocation in Confirmation. This sacrament is the beginning of a new era in these students’ lives and I hope the whole parish can pray for them as they grow in the ways of our Lord.
- Second, the assisting rails for the altar are finally being installed. I know it has been a long wait for some of you. But, it took a while to gather the appropriate amount of contractors. The job itself should be pretty quick. So, I expect it to be done either in Holy Week or Easter week. I do not want to spend too much time talking about the financial details of this project. If anyone is interested in knowing the details and donating to this project, feel free to ask. I just hope that it will be useful for all those who have trouble ascending and descending the Sanctuary.