The Church, today, celebrates Jesus’ triumphant entrance into Jerusalem as a memorial-mystery of his triumphant entrance into the Kingdom – where he has invited us to follow him. It is with this Christian optimism and joy that we enter into the passion week of the suffering and death of Christ Jesus; for we know that he has risen and has opened for us the gates of his Kingdom– the heavenly Jerusalem.
Saint Paul speaks of “the day of Christ” as his second coming when the Gospel will be fulfilled in those who have followed Christ Jesus to the end.
The Church ask in our prayers today: “… make us worthy to go forth and meet you at your second coming, just as the people of Jerusalem went forth to meet you. With the Apostles and the followers of Jesus, the Church, invites her children to join and proclaim: “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Hosanna to the Redeemer Lord!” (The Hebrew word Hosanna means: God saves us.) We are reminded by the Church that Joy is the main theme of these two Sundays – as it is the theme for Christian living as well. Suffering is passing away; but Joy is eternal. We need to know ourselves as those happy ones – with whom God, in his love, has shared the very life of his beloved Son – so that we may live by it, and find eternal happiness.
This proclamation of Joy is echoed by the Church in the Hymn of Light of Saint Ephrem at the dawn of every day, reminding us of the victory the beloved Christ has achieved for us: Let us glorify the majesty of the Son and give thanks to the almighty Father, who in an outpouring of love, sent him to us to fill us with hope and salvation… Stand up then and be ready! Give thanks to our King and Saviour, who will come in great glory to gladden us with his marvellous light in his kingdom. Let us put-on from within the garment of Christian Joy that was handed to us at our baptism. Let us remember that all our troubles and tribulations are passing away, as Christ transforms them by the love of his divinity, into the eternal joys of his Father’s Kingdom. Let us rejoice and celebrate, as we await his new coming with joy, and say to him: Hosanna!Come in Peace! Fr. Maroun El Kazzi