Holy Week

Caravaggio, Ecce Homo, c. 1606, Oil on canvas, 128 x 103 cm, Palazzo Rosso, Genoa

Caravaggio, Ecce Homo, c. 1606, Oil on canvas, 128 x 103 cm, Palazzo Rosso, Genoa

Our wandering in the desert comes to an end, and we are drawn to the saving power of the Light of Christ. Soon, the whole Church on earth and in Heaven will rejoice! And as we examine the successes and failures of this walk with Him over the past forty days, we do well to recall that it is a journey defined by imperfection; we are not alone in our many failures.

Like the crowd, we will wave in adoration as He enters the city,
and then later call for His crucifixion.

Like those who were indignant, we will wonder why some waste perfumed oil on Him.

Like the sons of Zebedee (and Peter), we will fall asleep when He asks us to pray with Him.

Like Judas, we will betray Him with a kiss, for a pocketful of coin.

Like most of His followers, we will scatter and abandon Him when He is arrested.

Like Caiaphas and the Sanhedrin, we will pretend that we have power over Him.

Like those who bore false witness in the Temple, we will fail to witness the Truth of who He is.

Like Peter, we will deny that we even know Him.

Like Herod, our interest in Him will only extend as far as our curiosity; we will not open our hearts.

Like Pilate, we will wash our hands and fail to do Justice.

Like the Roman guards, we will mock Him for our own pleasure and dress Him up in finery and laugh and spit at Him, and trade in His treasures.

Like the Cyrene, we will object to carrying His cross, even for a little while.

Like the Centurion, we will bind His hands and feet, and drive the nails.

Like the bad thief,

we will laugh at His agony.

But let us also be

The woman who anointed,
The disciples who regretted,
Peter who wept,
Claudia who warned,
The Marys who stayed,
Veronica who ministered,
John who adopted,
The good thief who saw,
The Centurion who spoke,
The Arimathean who venerated.



Holy Father’s Lent and Holy Week Calendar Released

You can check it out here. The Pewsitter headline is “Holy Thursday Chrism Mass not in prison this year”. However, I’m not sure if this is quite correct; I don’t think the Chrism Mass on Holy Thursday was held in the prison last year either.

Rather, I think the now-famous “foot washing of Muslim girl in Roman prison” took place during the Mass of the Lord’s Supper, normally celebrated in the late afternoon or evening of Holy Thursday, while the Chrism Mass will take place at St. Peter’s in the morning of that day. The Zenit article states that in connection with the Mass of the Lord’s Supper, “like last year and in previous years in Buenos Aires, he [Francis] will select a situation of a special nature from a pastoral point of view, which will be communicated when appropriate.” Perhaps a homeless shelter, or orphanage, or somewhere else altogether this year.