Palm Sunday 2012
Hymns of praise resound! Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Today's proclamation is a reminder of the great excitement and wonder that welcomes Jesus in the city of Jerusalem. Jesus was such a powerful presence to people-in word and action-that the whole city was "stirred to its depths". There were songs of welcome and greetings, great cheers and a great procession.
The initial instinct of the people is to celebrate the gracious presence of God in Jesus. There is gratitude, rejoicing, praise in the air. Soon these same people will turn and run because of their own fear. Bur for now they welcome the one who has brought the freshness of God into their lives-Jesus.
The readings preceding the Gospel narrative share a common vision: trust in God. The text from Isaiah, known as the Third Servant Song speaks of one who has been faithful to proclaiming the message of God despite persecution and rejection. In Psalm 22, the psalmist moves from a cry of abandonment that is a response to the persecution resulting from trusting in God to the recognition of God's loving presence. And the text from Philippians recounts Jesus' trust in the will of the Father, thus being empowered to empty himself of everything but this loving relationship. Because of his fidelity to this truth, Jesus' life is affirmed and confirmed: God exalts Jesus so we can truly proclaim Jesus as Lord.
Trust in God- in God's providential love that will not bring disgrace but help, that will not leave us abandoned but singing praises, that will not leave us emptied and dead but raised up. It is only that kind of trust that can serve as the backdrop for Jesus' decision to accept his sentence of death on the cross. The entry into Jerusalem is also an entry into the passion and death of Jesus. Yet Jesus could be obedient because of his profound trust in God.
– Connie Power, PBVM