Now that we are at Palm Sunday, we enter more deeply into the mysteries of our Christian faith through liturgical drama of Holy Week –a week that has changed all of history. No other event of history has been so impactful. The daily experience of the last month and perhaps speculating of what may happen in the months to come, is the result of how the virus has challenged our whole being. We are facing life and death and some suffering which puts into view what may have Jesus endured being with his move into Jerusalem.

In the time of the virus and in the years ahead, I hope we can say, “He must be here, too.”

Let Palm Sunday and Holy Week ground us in the Mystery of Love, and not in the misery of separation, anxiety, fear. All these things do not –cannot– cloud over that the Lord redeems all things. Our faith is in the person of Jesus Christ, Son of God, Savior of the World who saves, who heals, and who accompanies us to the heart of God the Father. We are not merely living in a parable, this is reality, this is our life.

St. Andrew of Crete offers us this perspective . . .

. . . It is ourselves that we must spread under Christ’s feet, not coats or lifeless branches or shoots of trees, matter which wastes away and delights the eye only for a few brief hours. But we have clothed ourselves with Christ’s grace, or with the whole Christ – ‘for as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ’ – so let us spread ourselves like coats under his feet.

As those who were formerly scarlet from sin but became white as wool through the purification of saving baptism, let us offer not palm branches but the prizes of victory to the conqueror of death. Today, let us too give voice to that sacred chant, as we wave the spiritual branches of our soul: ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord, the King of Israel.’