The webpage of the Youth Ministry of the Irish Province of Augustinians

Palm Sunday - 28th March 2010

Today marks the beginning of Holy Week which is the highlight of the Church's year.  Palm Sunday recalls Jesus entering Jerusalem to the acclaim of the multitude, the same multitude which would call for his crucifixion just a few days later.  This week focuses our attention particularly on the passion of the Lord and it does this in two ways.  Firstly, it presents us with the events of that week - almost as a sort of documentary - following the significant event of the week as a sort of ongoing news story.  However, the gospels are not primarily historical documents.  They are written from the point of view of faith, by people of faith, for communities of faith.

This brings us to the second way of looking at this week.  To follow Jesus is to be a disciple and discipleship is at the heart of this week.  Luke's version of the Passion which we listen to today makes this very explicit by including the episode of the discussion about which one of the disciples is the greatest.  This conversation takes place in the context of the Eucharist which is at the heart of our believing communities.  Jesus makes it clear that in our communities it is those who serve who are the greatest.

This is the marker which sets the tone for Holy Week.  It is about discipleship.  Service and self-giving lived out in a very extreme way by Jesus himself.  As we embark on this week we have an opportunity to renew our commitment to be disciples - people who want to serve as we follow.  To follow Jesus is not just about ideas, it is firmly rooted in actions.  The Ecuadorian singer Ricardo Arjona wrote a song a number of years ago.  The song is entitled: "Jesus Christ is a Verb not a Noun".  The idea is clear.  To be a Christian we have to be people who get physically involved in commiting ourselves to serve others.  It is impossible to be an armchair Christian.

Article posted on 25th of March 2010

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