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Daily Archives: April 7, 2017

PALM SUNDAY YEAR A 2017. A PEP TALK by Fr Brian Gleeson CP, Melbourne, Australia

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‘Keep in mind that Jesus Christ has died for us and is risen from the dead. He is our saving Lord, he is joy for all ages’ [Lucien Deiss]

We have already begun the best week in the whole liturgical year. Centuries ago it was called the ‘Great Week’. Nowadays we call it ‘Holy Week’. We walk with Jesus every step of the road to Calvary.

Palm Sunday Holy Week

We start today with his triumphant entry into Jerusalem. There we join the crowds acclaiming, welcoming, and applauding him as their Saviour. We do so with boundless enthusiasm and joy.

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On Thursday we will gather around his table. Once again we’ll hear and take to heart his own commandment: ‘Love one another as I have loved you’, and act it out in the Washing of the Feet. Once again we’ll receive the loving gift of himself in bread and wine. Then at the end of the meal we will set out with him along the path from the Upper Room to the Garden of Olives. There we’ll see him falling to the ground in fear and anxiety over the cruel and unjust death awaiting him. And as we see and hear him sobbing his heart out and even sweating drops of blood, our hearts will go out to him and our own eyes will fill up with tears.

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Friday will find us standing with his mother and a few faithful friends at the foot of the cross. We will be moved with compassion both for her and for him in their mental and physical torments. We’ll feel some of his sense of being alone and abandoned, betrayed and deserted, not only by friends and followers, but even by God. With St Paul we will say:

Jesus in the the Garden of AgonythZ2J42HCG

I have been crucified with Christ, and it is no longer I that live, but it is Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.  (Galatians 2:19b20)

I am the Resurrection thZ3OVJ8VW

On Saturday we will be quiet and silent around his tomb as we keep remembering the injustice, cruelty, hatred and hostility of all those evil men that murdered him. Then late on Saturday we will go from the darkness of the Way of the Cross to the place of the brightly burning fire. There we’ll join the procession of the great Easter Candle, that stands for the risen Christ, the Light of the World, lighting up the darkness of our church, our world, and our lives. There and then the pain and sadness of our journey with Jesus will give way to the joy and hope that comes from our rekindled faith. Jesus Christ is not dead and gone after all! No! He is very much alive, strong and powerful – alive in himself, and alive in us through the gift of his Spirit!

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And so we will hear in both our heads and hearts those comforting and reassuring words which Jesus Christ Crucified spoke to Juliana of Norwich in the quiet of her convent cell:

Juliana of Norwich

‘All will be well, all will be well, all manner of things will be well!’

Brian Gleeson special photo

bgleesoncp@gmail.com

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Palm Sunday/Passion Sunday Year A, 2017. A realhomilie from Fr Kevin Walsh, Sydney Australia. COME, FOLLOW ME!

COME, FOLLOW ME!

Palm Sunday Holy Week

One week from today is Easter Sunday! We will celebrate the triumph of Jesus over the final enemy … death! It is only correct and just that if we wish to join in the victory, then we should enter into the struggle, which precedes it. During Lent, we have been given the opportunity to reflect upon the quality of our lives in the face of the Lenten Invitation: Turn away from sin and be faithful to the Gospel. To help us in our Lenten response. The Readings for the five Sundays of Lent have given us a great deal of Food for Thought, and ample opportunity to reawaken our inner spirit to follow Christ wholeheartedly. As we said at the beginning of Lent, this is our Spiritual Training time. Any athlete who is serious about staying in good nick knows that if the training fades away, we don’t fade away…we just get bigger in body weight. The same applies to our Spiritual life, Lent is the perfect opportunity to put our Spiritual Fitness First! The rest of the year is not ‘holiday time’ it is all about keeping in practice the lessons and guidelines that we have embraced during Lent. This will help in a big way to keep us on track till next Lent.

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Today, as we receive our Blessed Palm, and give thanks and praise to God, we are given the chance to enter into the spirit of Holy Week. We can take this opportunity to walk with Jesus through this week in all its moods and complexities, and to finally rejoice in the Father’s glory when ‘life’ was re breathed into Jesus His Son: that new life which is offered to everyone which is celebrated on Easter Sunday.

easterB3.gif Easter Sunday 1

When we speak about Jesus in the Mass, for example, we use the past tense. “Dying you destroyed our death, rising you restored our life” … “By your Cross and Resurrection you have set us free”. In other words, Jesus has already completed his part of the formula for salvation; now the rest is up to us. Of course, we are not alone in this venture; the Holy Spirit is alive within God’s household. This week is a sacred time; it is up to us whether we wish to enter deeply into the spirit of it or not. The secular world is well and truly geared up for huge Easter egg sales, Hot Cross Buns, and massive attendances at the Easter Show, let alone getaway holidays, Bab B Q’s at home, and just taking it easy. The beginning and the end of these secular activities is often the $$$$ … but for us, the end of this week is New Life!

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When we enter into the Church’s Liturgy at the Easter Triduum … Holy Thursday, Good Friday and the Easter Vigil/Sunday, this newness of life and attentiveness to God’s Mission for us can be nourished and sustained in us. If we take ‘time out’ as family and individuals to make this journey, the results will is far more lasting for us than from a Chocolate Easter Bunny or a dozen Hot Cross Buns!

Hot cross Buns

There is a time and place for celebration, but it becomes all the more worthwhile when it has been earned through solid attentiveness to Jesus, who invites us to be truly servants of each other; to be responsive to His constant invitation to be with Him in prayer; to walk the Way of the Cross; and to allow the Cross to speak to our hearts. By entering into this mystery, we can rejoice in our God who loves us into life and gives us the responsibility through our Baptism, to share it with others.

3rd Sunday of Lent Year A Brian 3

Now is the time to plan our week! Now is decision time! There will be many inviting alternatives, which could take up our time and promise us rewards. However, this is the week of all weeks in which we as a community can be renewed through prayerfully and seriously walking the road to Calvary together … and then into the light of Resurrection.
Our reward? A greater alertness to the suffering Christ in His people today and the strength and quality to be ‘Easter People’ in a world where His Word is still to be proclaimed and heard.
May this week be a source of blessing for all of us? God Bless you all and your families and May we never forget each other in Prayer.

PRAYER REFLECTION: What Faith does?

Faith growing thK8CQN01X

Some people think that if you have enough faith life will be plain sailing. But this is not so.
The fact that we can swim doesn’t prevent us from being knocked about by the waves.
In the same way faith doesn’t shield us
from the hard knocks of life or death.

What, then does faith do?
It gives us bearings, and thus enables us
to live in a fragile world
without getting lost or giving in to despair.
Just as swimmers trust that if they don’t panic,
and if they do a few simple things,
then the power of the sea will uphold them.
So believers entrust their lives
to a greater power than us all.
This power is the creative power of God,
who rebreathed new life into his Son at the moment of His Resurrection!

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Fr Kevin Walsh
Email: kevin.w3@bigpond.com Web:https://realhomilies.wordpress.com/

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