Blessed Palm Sunday and Holy Week!
We have arrived at the most solemn week of our liturgical year, and I invite everyone to attend the Triduum services – Holy Thursday, Good Friday and the Great Easter Vigil. And please bring a friend!
From today, Palm Sunday, through Saturday at the Easter Vigil it can be overwhelming trying to absorb all that is occurring. Consider all that occurs -- the Passion today as understood through the cheering crowds and again on Good Friday viewed through the Cross, the institution of the priesthood and gift of the Eucharist on Holy Thursday or the Light radiating from Christ as He pushes away the stone on Easter Morning --- a light so bright that it welcomes new members into the Church as we will do on Holy Saturday. For me, too, it is a special time because I renew my priestly vows and receive the sacred oils that we will use for the sacraments on Chrism Tuesday.
My prayer is that each of us will allow the Holy Spirit to awaken our hearts and minds at a pivotal moment during these services that consoles and uplifts us. The Spirit knows our needs and desires even if we are unable to fully articulate them. Most of us have a good idea what we need in relation to the Cross we carry but this week allows us to journey with Christ as He carries His and our Cross together. With that burden shared and combined with Easter joy we can truly witness to the Risen Christ who conquered sin and death for all and all its associated struggles.
I would like to thank our young parishioners (and their parents!) who have started to lector and serve at our Masses. You personify the Hope that is contained in this week and manifested at Easter. I would also like to thank the students and teachers at SBS and SJPIICA who are so engaged when they attend Mass or when I visit the respective schools – their questions force me to think and their spirit keeps me grounded.
The schedule for Easter Masses in contained in the bulletin and on our website. Masses are anticipated to be crowded and I have added at 7:30 AM Easter morning Mass at St. Ann Church for your convenience.
Be assured of my prayers and please pray for me!