For a full copy of the Newsletter for Palm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord please click on the link; Passion Sunday 250318
This weekend we gather for Passion or Palm Sunday; in doing so we begin this holy of Holy Weeks. What we begin today can bring each one of us face to face with the reality of those events that lie at the heart of our faith. This week is a chance to relive those events. And it all fits together so perfectly, but it must be seen as a complete whole.
On this Monday evening at 5:10pm at the Cathedral, you are all invited to gather and celebrate a communal Rite of Reconciliation. As a Parish Family this is a time that brings together all our Lenten preparations and aspirations. We lay our lives squarely before God and one another and ask to realign our lives once again to God’s plan and to the enormous loving possibilities that are available to us.
On Thursday night at 7.00pm we gather with the Archbishop, we celebrate the marvellous memorial that Jesus left his people, to continue his presence with us. As we celebrate the Mass of the Lord’s Supper, we symbolically pledge ourselves to one another in service and then share the one bread and the one cup that brings us into the very life of God himself.
On Friday we focus on the harsh reality of the cross. At 10.00am we gather for the Stations of the Cross where we retrace, once again, the footsteps of our Saviour.
Our focus is drawn to 3.00pm on Good Friday, which is the main liturgical ceremony where we gather for the Veneration of the Cross and we hear, once again, the story of the Passion and we are in touch with the enormity of the love that has been shown us. However, in celebrating the Lord’s Passion we realise that this is not the complete story – there is more.
We leave in silence waiting and preparing for the great Easter celebration, which takes place on Holy Saturday night. There, at 7.00pm we return and gather in darkness to be blinded by the light of Christ’s resurrection. We hear again the story of salvation and are invited to receive the Eucharist, which is the ultimate sign of our belonging to the Church and of our participation in the death and resurrection of Christ.
This reality is visibly seen clearly on Easter Sunday morning when the Lenten starkness gives way to Easter joy. Could there be a more appropriate day than Easter Sunday to renew our baptismal vows and look with hope, to the journey that lies ahead?
Today we begin again the story of Holy Week. The Gospels do not explain Easter; Easter explains the Gospels.
May God bless you and yours at the start of this Holy Week,
Fr Peter Brannelly