Palm Sunday of the Lord’s Passion
April 13, 2014 – Year A
Readings: Mt 21:1-11, Is 50:4-7, Psalm 22, Phil 2:6-11, Mt 26:14-27:66
by Rev. Salvador Añonuevo, Pastor
A few minutes before Mass, I was talking to Deacon Eddie. He reminded me of a story from when his daughter Carrie was in kindergarten. She said that the best part of her day was when she saw her mom waiting for her at the bus stop after school. This is precisely the same feeling that travelers on a journey in the desert during the time of our Lord would have when they saw their friends and relatives waving palm branches to welcome them.
2000 years ago, the Holy Land didn’t look the same as it does today. It was mainly a desert and if you saw palm trees, that was a symbol of life – an oasis – a place where you could find water. You knew you would find people who lived there who had food. It was their tradition to wave palm branches to let their friend know that they were welcome; that they were so happy to see them; that they could have food and drink and feel secure. This is the kind of welcome that our Lord received in Jerusalem.
Here today we have blessed these palm branches to let our Lord know that we welcome him in our lives. We want him to be a part of our family and our home. After a day of work or school, we will also find comfort.
In the sanctuary of Holy Name of Mary, Jesus is present – body, blood, soul and divinity – in the Eucharist. After listening to his words and receiving him in Holy Communion, we believe that we will go forth with the grace to live in his loving presence. As we put these palm branches in our homes, we will be reminded of the good news that if we welcome our Lord in our dwelling places, he will make our home a personal sanctuary and an oasis of love.