Homily – April 17

We’ve just finished reading the passion of Jesus as told to us by Matthew. We’ve had two gospels in today’s Mass. In the first gospel, read before the blessing of the palms, we heard of Jesus coming into the holy city enthusiastically welcomed by the crowds as they called out, “blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord, Hosanna in the highest heaven.” In the second gospel for this feast we hear of how things go so quickly downhill. It tells of another procession, a procession we call, ‘the way of the cross’ a procession that goes out of the city to a hill called Calvary. These two processions bespeak the duality of our human response to God throughout our lives. Sometimes we welcome him in and other times we push him away.

It is our constant struggle to follow the challenge of St. Paul in this letter to the Philippians where he tells us, “have this mind in you which was also in Christ Jesus, though he was in the form of God, did not consider being equal to God as something to be exploited, but he emptied himself taking the form of a slave, he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death, even death on the cross.”

As we continue to celebrate this feast and begin our observance of Holy Week we pray for ourselves and for each other that we imitate, as best we can, the mind of Christ whose constant mindset was, “be it done to me according to your will.”