Sunday, April 09, 2006

This Most Sacred Week (Passion Sunday Homily)

Every year on Palm Sunday,
we hear two Gospel passages.

We hear the crowd greet Jesus with joy;
A few days later, we hear the crowd—

in the same city!
Crying for his blood: “Crucify him!”
Could they be the same people?

You and I are that crowd.

Why did this happen?
Do NOT say the Father

made his Son do this.

God could have saved us any way he wanted.

This is what the Son chose to do.
The Holy Trinity--

Father, Son and Holy Spirit--
chose it before time began;
and he chose it again,

as a man like us,
the night before he died.

Jesus chose this.

Archbishop Fulton Sheen said this:

“I tell you that if God

had not come down…and given us
the supreme example of sacrifice,
then it would be possible for fathers and mothers,
men and women of countless ages,
to do something greater, it would seem,
than God himself could do,
namely, lay down their lives for a friend.”

Many people say to me,
“Father, I want to understand

my Catholic Faith better.”

If you give the time, this week—

Holy Week—
to walking with the Lord…

If you set aside time

to attend Mass every day—
or at least on Holy Thursday evening,

when our Lord instituted the priesthood,
and the Mass…

Later today, at St. Mary's,
we will show the movie,
"The Passion of the Christ"--
a very powerful film.

But realize the Passion of Christ
has been "playing" on the altar
for 2,000 years--at every Mass!

From Thursday evening
to Saturday evening,
the Lord will be in the tabernacle,
in our chapel, but it will be closed.

We keep vigil,
standing watch by his tomb, as it were.
So please do come
to adore during those hours.

If you come to church
the one day of the year
there is no Mass—

I mean Good Friday;
on Good Friday we pray,

we honor the Cross,
and have communion,

but there is no Mass…

If you come for Mass

on Saturday evening,
the great Vigil—

I know it’s late, and long;
but if you come all three days:
Holy Thursday, Good Friday,

the Vigil on Saturday?

I guarantee you:

you will understand your faith better!

Know that Father Ang and I

will be praying for you—
for all our parishioners—

in a special way this week.
Please pray for those
entering the Church next week;
and please pray for one another.


Unknown said...

Many people seem to be calling today "Passion Sunday."

Did something change that I'm not aware of?

I went to a showing of The Passion of the Christ at a neighboring parish. They had a good projector that probably created an image 15 feet or better square.

Unfortunately, it was in a modern
sanctuary with 16 skylights and a sunny day that made the projected image not the best. But after the Garden of Gethsemane scenes, it really didn't matter that the image wasn't great.

The power of the story was every bit as strong as when I saw it three times two years ago.

Mike L said...

Not bad, Fr. Fox.

I know that all decent priests are very busy, despite your humble disclaimers. So if and when you have time, please check out my bloviations on Palm Sunday Homiletics.


Fr Martin Fox said...


Actually, Passion Sunday is what this is called, officially. Prior to Vatican II, you had Passion Sunday, a week earlier than this, then Palm Sunday; I gather this is a product of the calendar revision that followed the Council.

Not that too many people call it this; but once in a while, I try to use the proper title.