Being an Easter people to a Palm Sunday people

April 13, 2019

April 14th, 2019 –

Sixth Sunday of Lent Palm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord

Gospel: Luke 19: 28-40 and Luke 22:14-23:56

On Palm Sunday we journey to the Cross. Jesus enters Jerusalem to much celebration. We, the people, welcome him triumphantly, expecting that our king has come to claim his throne and establish his kingdom. Instead, he tells us not to fight for him as he is arrested, crucified and then dies. Our Gospel ends today with Jesus’ death. This is as disturbing a place to be today as it was for his disciples then.

The disciples had expected Jesus to be king: instead, he is in the tomb. They went into hiding, denying they knew him. They questioned whether they ever really knew him. Yet they had believed in him, witnessed his miracles and shared his teachings. So how could he have been put to death? And what happens now? Imagine their uncertainty – would these disciples ever see their friend again? Would the promised safety and beauty of God’s Kingdom be realized?

We know how this story ends. We know the Resurrection will arrive next week. Even the celebration of the Eucharist during Palm Sunday Mass is a celebration of the Resurrection. We look forward to the joy of Easter.

For those who have been forced from their homes due to war, discrimination, environmental disaster or the building of megaprojects, the ending is not quite as clear. They live with the uncertainty of not knowing what comes next, living each day in shadow. How will we respond to them? Can we become the community that carries the joy of the Resurrection into dark places, and also responds in a practical way to the very human needs of those who have fled?

This is why we invite you to Share the Journey! Share the journey of Lenten refocusing, of dispelling myths about persecuted communities, of solidarity with those who are living in uncertainty. Carry the hope of the Resurrection even in dark times. Build the culture of encounter. Be the Church. Be Christ to the world. Be an Easter People to those who continue to live in uncertainty. Share the Journey.

Author: Kathleen Ladouceur, Catholic Schools Program Officer for Development and Peace in Alberta