23 Mar 2013

24th March 2013 - Palm Sunday

And so at last this year we begin the beginning of this most Holy of Weeks, an intense liturgical and reflective week which is the pinnacle of the Christian year; a celebration of the raison d'etre of why we are Christian - to mark the Passion, Death and Resurrection of the Lord.

On this weeks programme John, Anne and Lorraine are joined by Geraldine Creaton to reflect on Palm Sunday and Holy Week. We have a reflection on the gospel reading of the day as well as some reflective music and pauses in a busy day.

This weeks programmes is available to listen to on podcast HERE.

H/t "Let us resolve to make this week holy"
Let us resolve to make this week holy by claiming Christ’s redemptive grace and by living holy lives.

The Word became flesh and redeemed us by his holy life and holy death. This week especially, let us accept redemption by living grateful, faithful, prayerful, generous, just and holy lives.

Let us resolve to make this week holy by reading and meditating Holy Scripture.

So often, we get caught up in the hurry of daily living. As individuals and as families, reserve prime time to be with Jesus, to hear the cries of the children waving palm branches, to see the Son of Man riding on an ass' colt, to feel the press of the crowd, to be caught up in the "Hosannas” and to realize how the cries of acclamation will yield to the garden of suffering, to be there and watch as Jesus is sentenced by Pilate to Calvary, to see him rejected, mocked, spat upon, beaten and forced to carry a heavy cross, to hear the echo of the hammer, to feel the agony of the torn flesh and strained muscles, to know Mary’s anguish as he hung three hours before he died.

We recoil before the atrocities of war, gang crime, domestic violence and catastrophic illness. Unless we personally and immediately are touched by suffering, it is easy to read Scripture and to walk away without contacting the redemptive suffering that makes us holy. The reality of the Word falls on deaf ears.

Let us take time this week to be present to someone who suffers. Sharing the pain of a fellow human will enliven Scripture and help us enter into the holy mystery of the redemptive suffering of Christ.

Let us resolve to make this week holy by participating in the Holy Week services of the church, not just by attending, but also by preparing, by studying the readings, entering into the spirit, offering our services as ministers of the Word or Eucharist, decorating the church or preparing the environment for worship.

Let us sing, "Lord, have mercy," and "Hosanna." Let us praise the Lord with our whole heart and soul and mind and strength, uniting with the suffering church throughout the world -- in Rome and Ireland, in Syria and Lebanon, in South Africa and Angola, India and China, Nicaragua and El Salvador, in Washington, D.C., and Jackson, Mississippi.

Let us break bread together; let us relive the holy and redemptive mystery. Let us do it in memory of him, acknowledging in faith his real presence upon our altars.

Let us resolve to make this week holy by sharing holy peace and joy within our families, sharing family prayer on a regular basis, making every meal a holy meal where loving conversations bond family members in unity, sharing family work without grumbling, making love not war, asking forgiveness for past hurts and forgiving one another from the heart, seeking to go all the way for love as Jesus went all the way for love.

Let us resolve to make this week holy by sharing holy peace and joy with the needy, the alienated, the lonely, the sick and afflicted, the untouchable.

Let us unite our sufferings, inconveniences and annoyances with the suffering of Jesus. Let us stretch ourselves, going beyond our comfort zones to unite ourselves with Christ's redemptive work.

We unite ourselves with Christ's redemptive work when we reconcile, when we make peace, when we share the good news that God is in our lives, when we reflect to our brothers and sisters God's healing, God's forgiveness, God's unconditional love.

Let us be practical, reaching out across the boundaries of race and class and status to help somebody, to encourage and affirm somebody, offering to the young an incentive to learn and grow, offering to the downtrodden resources to help themselves.

May our fasting be the kind that saves and shares with the poor, that actually contacts the needy, that gives heart to heart, that touches and nourishes and heals.

During this Holy Week when Jesus gave his life for love, let us truly love one another
Palm Sunday and Holy Week

Palm Sunday, or Passion Sunday as it is also called, begins Holy Week. This week is he “holy of holies” of the Christian Church Year. For today we begin our observance of the last days of our Lord’s early sojourn, “for us and for our salvation,” as He enters in the very heart of darkness, sin and death itself. The triumph of the humble King who enters Jerusalem, humble and riding on a donkey, is marked on Sunday with a triumph: shouting crowds and exuberant shouts of welcome and celebration, but in only five days, the shouts of welcome turn to shouts of anger, hate and a call for his death. “O, Dearest Jesus, what law hast Thou broken?” as the old Lutheran hymn puts it. Let us then fix our hearts and minds on prayerful watching and waiting during these days, as we again are led by the Holy Spirit to see in our hearts, and our minds, the evil sinful nature and the thoughts, words and deeds, which put our Lord on the Cross. And repenting of them, despairing of ourselves, we turn once more to Christ the Crucified One, on whom is placed the sins of the world: your sins, my sins. “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world!”

Geraldine reflects on the various aspects and ceremonies of Holy Week as we walk the journey of salvation to Calvary. She reflects on the paradox of Palm Sunday where we are presented with the intensity of the events of that Holy Week. The readings of the Mass almost give us a synopsis of the week to come and then each day that follows we walk step by step with the Master as he moves towards Calvary and the Cross.

Reflection from Geraldine is available to listen to HERE.

Previous reflections about Holy Week on SS102 fm here and here

Gospel - Luke 22:14-23, 56

Today the Church proclaims the Passion of Christ. The story of the Lord's suffering and death haunted the minds of the first Christians. All the Gospels center around it and find their fulfillment in it. The special emphasis in this years account, taken from the Gospel of Luke, is Christ's struggle with the false kingdoms of the world

Lorraine's reflection on the gospel is available HERE.

Other reflections on this weeks gospel:

Blue Eyed Ennis - Phil has a great round up of reflections and links for today and make sure you check in with her during the week for further reflections.
Word on Fire - Fr Barron
English Dominicans
Sunday Reflections
Centre for Liturgy

Liturgical odds and ends

As the days of Holy Week out rank all feasts and memoria of saints, we won't be posting any Saints of the Week this week.

Divine Office: Psalter - Week 2

The Solemnity of the Annunciation of the Lord usually celebrated on March 25th will be celebrated on Monday 8th April 2013.
  • Chrism Mass - as the Diocese of Limerick is still technically without a bishop this Holy Week, the holy oils are being blessed by Archbishop Charles Brown (the papal nuncio) at a Chrism Mass in St John's Cathedral on Wednesday evening at 7.30pm. Something to note that the chrism oils blessed at this Mass will be used to consecrate our new bishop on April 14th.
  • Holy Thursday - Mass of the Lord's Supper - Reminder to bring back your Trocaire boxes/donations to your parish.
  • Good Friday - Passion Ceremony - Day of Fast & Abstinence (First Friday) - traditional to perform the Stations of the Cross.
  • Holy Saturday - Easter Vigil Ceremony - reminder that in the diocese of Limerick all Easter Vigil Masses will be after sunset.

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