Catholic Prayers for the New Evangelization

"Catholic Prayers for the New Evangelization"

Check out the revised edition of this exciting and unique prayer book, filled with prayers that are sure to nourish the soul as we undertake the New Evangelization.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Gratitude for Jesus Christ: Palm Sunday and Holy Week

As we begin Holy Week, this special time in which we focus on the redemptive work of Jesus, within this Year of Mercy, we commemorate His triumphant entry into Jerusalem together with His Passion and death.  Our meditation stirs in us a deep sense of gratitude. 

Saint Paul tells us that our faith is in vain if Jesus has not risen from the dead.  Indeed, the Resurrection is proof that Jesus is God and that He has power over death and the grave.

But first, and most significantly for all of us and for each of us, is the sacrifice of the Calvary.  The love of Jesus is revealed in the most profound way as He offers Himself to the Father in our place on the altar of the Cross to take away our sins.  At the realization that God emptied Himself to take on human flesh and further humbled Himself to death on a Cross, we are moved by the Spirit to express gratitude and praise. 

The Lord of all creation is handed over to His creatures.  The origin of all law is tortured by lawless men.  The foundation of truth is sentenced to death because of a lie.  All glory be to you, O incomprehensible and long-suffering Lord!

The crowds who welcome Jesus to Jerusalem with cries of  "Hosanna!" are the same crowds who, days later, are stirred into frenzy by the jealousy of the Pharisees, demand the crucifixion of their Savior.  Behold the contempt and ingratitude with which our Lord is treated. 

Remember what Has done for us, for you.  As He felt each thorn, each lash, each splinter, each nail, He had you in mind and He bled for you.  May we always be on guard, lest we fall into ingratitude as the crowds did.  We, who cry out "Hosanna!" before the Eucharistic Prayer at every Mass, can so easily forget and turn against Jesus when we sin.  We are broken, wounded, weak human persons. 

Today and throughout this Holy Week, we open our hearts and ask the Spirit to enter into us and fill us with gratitude and praise, with a sense mindfulness of all Jesus has done for us.  He died that we might live.  Because He died, life is with living!

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