Palm Sunday marks the beginning of Holy Week. This week we call to mind the unconditional love of Jesus who gave his life for us. Commemorating the events that led to our salvation, we set our sights on celebrating the Lord’s’ victory over sin and death on Easter Sunday.
This Holy Week arrives during troubled times in our world. Even though the peak of the pandemic seems to be behind us, we grapple with the many consequences it has had on our world, our country, our Church, our families and ourselves. We continue to witness the devastation and suffering caused by the war in Ukraine and fervently pray that a path to peace will be found. Encouraged by the outpouring of care and help that has emerged through these events, there is also a measure of uncertainty and concern about what the future will bring.
Holy Week invites us to respond to our baptismal call to holiness. We do this by our concrete efforts to make Holy Week holy. This week, let’s continue our Lenten practices of prayer, fasting and giving to others. Let’s carry with us family, friends, care givers, doctors, nurses, and those who are ill. Let’s take with us those suffering because of war and those mourning those who have died. Let’s pray more than ever. Pray the rosary with those in our homes. Name out loud people we are remembering in prayer. Let’s sing holy songs of praise and hope. Let’s make a space for an in-home altar, a special place where we put a Bible, a candle, a statue of Mary or of a saint, some flowers, photos, or art, all calling us to connect with Jesus and each other.
As our churches are open again, please consider planning time to attend the special services this week. The beautiful Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Holy Thursday, the Liturgy of the Lord’s Passion on Good Friday, the great Easter Vigil on Holy Saturday night, Mass on Easter Sunday.
Holy Week is a gift that is much needed at this time. Together, let’s make it different from other weeks through the special ways we invite a bit of holiness into our lives and the lives of others. As we still have challenging times ahead of us, what a great opportunity we have to face the future with courage and hope because we made this Holy Week holy.
Together in faith,
Very Rev. Christopher Smith, Rector