Holy Week is the week when the Passion—the suffering and death of Jesus Christ is remembered.
On Palm Sunday Our Lord Jesus Christ entered Jerusalem, the holy city, mounted on a donkey. This event had been prophesied centuries before. The people who loved and revered him made the journey a procession. Some laid their cloaks on the road to serve as carpets. Others waved palm branches, in the way great men were honored in those days.
The people knew they were in the presence of a great preacher. But the more meditative ones had come to recognize Him as the Messiah, when He taught them doctrine lessons about the Scriptures and when He multiplied bread so hungry multitudes could eat. They chanted hymns, and shouted, “Hosanna! Blessed is He Who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest.”
The noise scandalized some of the Pharisees, or made them envious of the homage He was getting from the people. They scolded the people so they would stop their songs of joy and love of God. But He said to the Pharisees, “If these are silenced, the very stones would cry out.”
How joyful we should be knowing that God has made Himself a man so we can be like Him. Do we allow Christ to enter our being so that we can be His temple? Or are we, like the Pharisees, blocking his entry into our lives?
The Gospel today tells us of Jesus’s visit, six days before the Passover, to the house of Lazarus and his sisters Martha and Mary. This is the Lazarus whom Jesus had raised from the dead. They made Him supper, Martha served and Lazarus was among those at table with Jesus. Mary took a pound of costly ointment of pure nard and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped His feet with her hair; and the house was filled with the fragrance of the ointment.
But Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples (he who was to betray Him), said, “Why was this ointment not sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?” He said this not because he cared for the poor but because he was a thief and took whatever he wanted for himself from the money box. Jesus said, “Let her alone, let her keep the ointment for the day of my burial. The poor you always have with you, but you do not always have me.”
Are you one of those Catholics who complain about the Church for spending money on beautiful altars and shining sanctuaries for the Blessed Sacrament? Would you make the living God in the form of the consecrated wafer to dwell in just any box. If you truly believed that Christ—His Body, Blood and Divinity—is truly alive in the Blessed Sacrament would you begrudge him the best lodging place in the church?
Or are you just claiming, like Judas, to love the poor? MTeditorial