Life on the Chrism Trail

Homily for Palm Sunday of the Lord’s Passion

March 28, 2021
St. Patrick Cathedral
Fort Worth, Texas

Isaiah 50:4-7
Psalm 22:8-9, 17-18, 19-20, 21-22
Philippians 2:6-11
Mark 14:1-15:47

When you get right down to it, every death is a disaster. Death is a total and utter negation of every part of life that leads up to it. It ends friendships, it makes widows and widowers, it makes orphans, it closes the future, it ends life. Many nonbelievers, even those who enjoy life, in their more honest moments admit the unmentionable: death mocks our every action and achievement; it mocks all our hopes; it casts a shadow on everything we do in life.

After we experience the death of many of our loved ones, whether old and frail or middle-aged and struck down by infirmity or young and taken from us by tragedy, we realize that nothing less than a God who would face our death with us could bring us hope and light and life through the transformation of death.

Could a God so love and heal us who are burdened with sin and weighed down by death unless He chose to face the emptiness of death not only as God but as man? He did so:  Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani … My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? In that moment when He offered His own human fear and loneliness and emptiness that He accepted as part of our human condition to be redeemed, Jesus was completely open to receive God.

In this most Holy Week of the year for us, we are called to accompany the Lord in His passion and death. We are called to realize how futile and empty our lives would be without His spirit and grace. And we are called to ponder the wonderous and unspeakable love that we have been given. Let us not let this week pass us by.

%d bloggers like this: