A reflection for Palm Sunday of the Lord’s Passion – April 10, 2022
When prayerfully reading Sacred Scripture, it’s important that we not overlook the seemingly small details, because it’s often in those small details where we find great treasures for the spiritual life.
There’s one such detail in the Gospel that was read at the beginning of Mass today. Did you notice how no one opposed the two disciples when they untied the colt that they were to bring to Jesus? Yes, they were questioned, but when they said that the Lord had need of the colt, no one opposed them; rather, they simply permitted the disciples to take it.
St. John Chrysostom, commenting on why no one stopped the two disciples but rather yielded to them when they untied and took the colt, said:
“From this [Jesus] likewise teaches His disciples, that whatsoever He might ask of them they should give. Even should He bid them give up life itself, even that must be denied. For if these obeyed Him who knew Him not, much more should they be prepared to give up all things for Him.”
We can learn a powerful lesson from this small detail. Just as the bystanders gave up the colt to be brought to Jesus, so too the disciples should freely give whatever Jesus would ask of them. This generosity of spirit, this willingness to give to the Lord what he asks, is the hallmark of a true disciple.
So what does the Lord ask us to freely give to him during this most sacred week? Perhaps most importantly, he asks us to freely give him our time. We have a wonderful opportunity this week to deepen our communion with Christ through participation in the Holy Week liturgies.
On Holy Thursday, during the Mass of the Lord’s Supper, we celebrate the institution of the Eucharist and the priesthood. After this liturgy, you can spend some time in prayer before the Eucharist at the altar of repose. On Good Friday, we remember the Lord’s Passion and venerate the Cross. There are also opportunities to attend the Stations of the Cross on that day. The Easter Vigil, the greatest of all of the Church’s liturgies, is Saturday evening. We begin by keeping vigil at the Lord’s tomb, recalling salvation history, and then celebrate with the whole Church the glory of the Resurrection and our own baptism into the redemption it brought us. And then, of course, there is the joy of Easter Sunday.
This week, give the Lord your time so that you can give him your heart. Attend the Sacred Triduum at your parish. Immerse yourself in the Passion, Death, and Resurrection of Jesus by worshipping at these liturgies, united with the whole Church.
Jesus taught the disciples that whatever he asks of them they should give. Jesus asks for our time this week so that we can prayerfully participate in the celebration of his Passion, Death, and Resurrection. Let us endeavor to give it to him.