This Sunday, Palm Sunday or Passion Sunday has these two names because of the reading of the account of Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem with the Palm Sunday Procession and later with the reading of the Gospel account of the Passion of our Lord. This prepares us for Holy Week and what is to come later in the week. This is a lengthy Gospel that begins with Judas betrayal of Jesus at the Last Supper to the crucifixion of Jesus. At the end of this Gospel, the Roman centurion says, “Truly, this was the Son of God.” A few people stayed until the end and it is surprising that a Roman centurion probably a pagan- speaks this statement of belief.
I remember witnessing in 2010 the Passion Play at Oberammergau, Germany that has been staged every ten years since the 1600’s. The whole town participates in the play with a large cast and a full orchestra and chorus. It runs from May to October and this six hour production really captures you and helps you understand what happened to Jesus at the end of his life. It is a moving production that the town stages in thanksgiving to God for sparing them from the plague. This play will be staged again in 2020. Perhaps, we can put a pilgrimage together that year. Please note the time for confessions and all of the services for this week.
Set aside time to enter into this Holy Week.
-Fr. Andrew Reitz, O.F.M.