Sunday, March 25, 2018

Passion Sunday

Today we began Holy Week - Palm Sunday - aka - Passion Sunday - one of the longest services in the Christian liturgical calendar.  Here in Arizona - on the reservation - we began outdoors in the warm Arizona sun with the blessing of palms at the outdoor altar - then -  procession inside into the 120 year old Spanish styled mission church.  Inside we celebrated a typical Palm Sunday Mass complete with a reading of the Passion - an enthusiastic homily  by Father Antony - fueled by the Fire of the Holy Spirit - a charism of the charismatic Franciscan Friars of The Holy Spirit. Two hours later we emerged - inspired - excited - to enter into Holy Week with a passion to - do it right - with right minds - focusing our energies on the events that will be celebrated during this very special week.

I enjoy hearing the reading of Holy Scripture - especially when it describe the Holy Land - places that I have personally visited - anticipating a third visit later t his fall.  My first pastor had told me that I would never hear Holy Scripture the same once I would visit Israel.  He was right - my writing - my preaching - have all changed since that first visit in 2010.  Now when I have an opportunity to preach and the scriptures refer to Cana or the Kidron Valley or Jerusalem - my preaching takes on a new excitement that I attempt to share with the congregation.  Visiting the Holy Land - important religious sites in Spain - Italy - Poland - have all increased my passion to preach the Gospel to all who will listen. As each of us enters Holy Week - we need to realize that all of us - ordained or not - have been called to share the Good news of Christ.- with passion.

Deacon Dale