Palm Sunday of the Lord’s Passion

The antiphons sung by the choir of the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in Sacramento, CA this morning, give a superb overview for our reflection of our Lord’s passion:

Opening Antiphon:

Hosanna filio David:
benedictus qui venit
     in nomine Domini.
Rex Israel: Hosanna in excelsis.
Hosanna to the Son of David.
Blessed is he who comes
    in the name of the Lord.
King of Israel: Hosanna in the highest.

The Scriptures tell us the crowd was jubilant, escorting Jesus into the city of Jerusalem. They spread their cloaks on the ground before Jesus, while others cut branches from the trees to place along the road. The crowds all around were cheering, crying out “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the Highest!” (paraphrased from Matthew 21:1-11).

The readings shift our attention from the exaltation of Jesus and his king’s welcome into the city, to the reason why he came to Jerusalem in the first place. Jesus said, “The Son of Man must suffer greatly and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed and on the third day be raised.” (Luke 9:22)


Offertory Antiphon:

O vos omnes qui transitis per viam:
attendite et videte
si est dolor
     sicut dolor meus.
Come, all you who pass by the way:
look and see 
whether there is any suffering
     like my suffering.

What a challenge to hear these words at the offertory. “Come, pass by and see my suffering.”

Saint Magdalene of Canossa always told her daughters, “No matter how little the Daughters of Charity penetrate the mystery of the Cross, they will see that the strictest poverty they might practice will always be a game and nothing compared to that of the Crucifix.” (Unabridged Rule of the Canossian Daughters of Charity, p.68)

Thus, whatever we do, any sacrifices we make in the name of Christ, we have no reason to boast. There is no suffering like that of our Lord in His passion.


Communion Antiphon

Pater, si non potest hic calix transire,
nisi bibam illum:
fiat voluntas tua.
Father, if this cup cannot pass away
unless I drink it,
Thy will be done.

Father, Thy will be done! These words were repeated while the faithful made their way up to communion today. “Father, if this cup cannot pass, but I must drink of it, let your will be done, let your will be done.”  (Matthew 26:42).

Every step towards communion reminded me of the ultimate sacrifice, the pouring out of our Lord’s blood for our sins. It humbled me to think that I can receive the Lord’s true presence in the Eucharist. Are we worthy? No. We never will be. But by Jesus’ obedience to the Father’s will, our reception is based on His worthiness…what grace.


Blessed Holy Week everyone. May our Lord bless you abundantly in our contemplation of His greatest act of love found on the Cross.


Related posts:

Lisa Graas has the Passion of Christ in Full on her site.

If you haven’t been to confession for a while, Father Z has some helpful hints.

Let’s remember Mary’s role as we reflect on the passion.

All the Saints of God, Pray for Us

What a vision to behold…to imagine…the Saints, the holy ones of heaven! And today, that is exactly what the liturgy concentrates on; To recall the great gift we have in the many luminous examples of the Christian Life that have gone before us to share in the heavenly reward with Christ. It is often argued, no one knows for sure who is in heaven and who is not. In her wisdom, the Church has put forth good examples from every walk of life of holy men and women, so to inspire the faithful towards holiness.

I mention only a few who have been beacons of light in my life.

Blessed Chiara ‘Luce’ Badano, pray for us

Deep union with the Lord in her suffering.


Blessed Margaret of Castello, pray for us

Loving her parents who didn’t want her.

I propose her to be patroness of the unborn.


St Gianna Beretta Molla, pray for us

Gave her life for the birth of her child. I propose her to be patroness of expectant mothers.

St Josephine Bakhita, pray for us

Canossian Daughter of Charity known for forgiveness.

When we are persecuted, let us learn forgiveness.


St Magdalene of Canossa, pray for us

Foundress of the Canossian Daughters of Charity, Servant of the Poor

Let us learn from her zeal for our Lord in His passion.

St Augustine of Hippo

Patron of those struggling with vices.


The list could go on forever…St Teresa of Avila, St John of the Cross, St Paul of the Cross, St Francis Xavier, St Dominic, St Catherine, St Francis, St Clare, …

Father, all-powerful and ever-living God, today we rejoice in the holy men and women of every time and place. May their prayers bring us your forgiveness and love. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen

May all the Saints of heaven, pray for us. Omnium Sanctorum, Orate pro nobis.

If you have a favorite saint, why not add it in the comments. Let us honor them today. Here are some suggestions from the comments:

Assorted Joys added:

St Maximilian Kolbe, Pray for Us!
St Anthony of Padua, Pray for Us!
St Jude, Pray for Us!

Greg added:

St Pio of Petricina, Pray for Us!
St Therese of the Child Jesus, Pray for Us!
Bl Pier Giorgio Frassati, Pray for Us!

Ellen added:

St Thomas More, Pray for Us!
St Philip Howard, Pray for Us!
St Edmund Campion, Pray for Us!
Ven Elizabeth Lesseur, Pray for Us!
Ven Pierre Toussaint, Pray for Us!

EricaTwitts added:

St Bernadette Soubirous, Pray for Us!

Sylvie adds:

St Brother André, Pray for Us!


More ways of honoring the Saints:

Gardenia shares a way of honoring the Saints, making stained glass candles at My Little Flower.

Charlotte made a St Bakhita costume for her daughter at Waltzing Matilda.

The Anchoress shares some beautiful pictures of Saint statues from St Peter’s Basilica – Rome, and the difficult reality of the Christian Life – Syrian Catholics killed yesterday in Baghdad during Mass.

Colleen Hammond reminds us of how our prayers during the month of November can obtain indulgences for the faithful departed souls (November 2nd is the Feast of All Souls).

If you’re interested in knowing where to add your favorite Saint in the Litany of Saints, Adoremus has a post on that.

Worship of Christ Crucified

Something to think about: “Jesus Crucified was stripped of everything on the Cross except His love.”

These words by Saint Magdalene of Canossa were the inspiration for this video, which invites us to take a moment to offer praise and thanksgiving to the Lord, who “reconciled to himself all things…making peace through His blood, shed on the Cross.” (Colossians 1:2):

A Prayer to Jesus Crucified
Look down upon me, O good and sweetest Jesus,
while before your face I humbly kneel.
Most fervently I pray and beg you,
to fix deep in my heart lively sentiments
of faith, hope and charity,
true sorrow for my sins,
and a firm purpose of amendment.
With deep affection and sorrow
I contmplate your five wounds.
I have before my eyes, O good Jesus,
what David the prophet spoke of you,
as though you were saying it yourself:
They have pierced my hands and feet,
they have numbered all my bones (Psalm 21:17).