holy week

We are fast approaching a very sacred time in the Catholic religion. This Sunday we will be celebrating Palm Sunday, commemorating Jesus’ entrance into Jerusalem. It is very easy to picture ourselves as part of the crowd welcoming Him into the town. That is the easy part.

That day, however, is the beginning of Easter week. The rest of this week we see different peoples in Jesus’ company. We see the Apostles gathered with Him at the Last Supper. Would we be there? They were together celebrating the Passover, or though they thought. Jesus introduces them to a new sacrifice. “This is My body”, “This is My blood”. What is this man saying? Would we accept those statements?

A short time later we see armed men sneaking up on Jesus and seizing Him, placing Him under arrest, and taking Him back to their superiors. Would we be part of that group? Or, would we be with His followers, who fled? He is beaten, whipped, and made fun of. Would we be the ones taunting Him? Pilate washes his hands as a gesture of saying that he is not responsible for what is taking place. Would we also be washing our hands? Refusing to help Him, but just pointing out that we do not agree, and remain silent?

He is beaten and whipped as He carries His cross. The people, who had been waving palm branches and praising Him, they are now jeering Him, spitting at Him…mocking Him. Would you be part of that? You were with this group earlier waving those same palm branches. As He reaches Calvary, and is stripped of his garments, and nailed to the cross, look around are you part of this group?

In all of these scenarios, we pick and choose who we would be, what we would be doing, where we would stand. But this choosing is not a conscious decision on our part now. It is, and has been, a life choice that we have been making all along through our lives. Have we been actively participating at Mass? Do we know and believe that Jesus is with us each time we attend mass? Do we go to Mass? Do we whip and beat Jesus? Of course, we do. Every time we choose to do something that is not right, something that refuses to help someone, something that seeks out our own pleasure regardless of the consequences, we choose something, someone other than Jesus, we shun Him; we mock Him. We oftentimes, think of ourselves in a righteous manner, maybe even now we are doing that. I wouldn’t do that. I don’t do that.

As was said earlier, this is a life choice. You are still alive. If you see areas where you don’t measure up, you still can pray and ask the Holy Spirit to guide you, to help you. Assess your actions, your motives. Where do you stand?