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May 22, 2018

THE FEAST OF DIFFERENT COLOURS

Pastors corner with Fr Henry Ibe

  Palm Sunday is a day of contradictions – commemorating the triumphal entry of a king to his city, but who ends up being crucified only days later. Palm Sunday is also Passion Sunday: The day of “Hosanna in the highest” is also the day of “Crucify him! Crucify him!”  The day of “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord” is also the day of “I do not know him!” And in the unfolding drama we see different characters at play: First is Jesus, the King who enters Jerusalem on the back of a colt. The…

Palm Sunday in the lives of true Christians

  Palm Sunday is one of those major Christian festivals which have gradually become exceptionally important in the Church’s liturgical Calendar.  In line with the  Ash Wednesday ritual which introduced every Christian into the Lenten season, the Palm Sunday practice which used to be a purely Catholic Church ceremony has been appropriated and  given a universal prominence by the entire Christendom worldwide. Simply understood, it is always a spiritual and a physical parade commemorating the historical solemn but triumphant entry of our Lord Jesus Christ into Jerusalem about two thousand and eighteen years ago.   Here in Nigeria and in…

From Hosanna to Crucifixion

Pastors corner with Fr Henry Ibe

It’s Palm Sunday today and it is Passion Sunday! It is a day of dramas and monumental contradictions. On this day, we commemorate the triumphal entry of a king who ends up dying like a common criminal. It is a day of both “Hosanna”,and of “Crucify him!” It’s a day of acclamation: “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord” and, also, a day of denials: “I do not know him!” It’s a day of paying homage and, also, a day of mockery!   Dear friends, as we recall one of the most dramatic episodes of the…

Passion Sunday Year A

GOSPEL        A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew 21:1-11 When they drew near to Jerusalem and came to Bethphage, the Mount of Olives, then Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, “Go into the village opposite you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her; untie them and bring them to me. If any one says anything to you, you shall say, ‘The Lord has need of them,’ and he will send them immediately.” This took place to fulfil what was spoken by the prophet, saying, “Tell the daughter of Zion, Behold, your…

The Passion Drama

Pastors corner with Fr Henry Ibe

It is a feast of contradictions today. We celebrate the triumphal entry of a king to the great applause of the people. However, this same King is condemned to a brutal death, betrayed by the very people who hailed his arrival. Ironically, this death is what brings him ultimate victory and earns him the greatest name above all. It’s Palm Sunday and it’s also Passion Sunday. It’s the day of “Hosanna in the highest”, but also the day of “Crucify him! Crucify him!” It is the day of acclaiming: “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord”,…

THE DRAMA OF PALM SUNDAY

Pastors corner with Fr Henry Ibe

Today we celebrate Palm Sunday. It is a feast of contradictions. On the one hand we commemorate the triumphal entry of a king to the great applause of his subjects; on the other hand, this same king goes to his brutal death in a matter of days – betrayed by the very subjects who hailed his victorious arrival in Jerusalem. But, ironically, this death is what seals his ultimate victory and makes him the definitive expression of divine mercy and the source of eternal salvation for anyone who believes in him. It’s Palm Sunday and it’s also Passion Sunday. The…

Sunday Readings: PALM SUNDAY YEAR

Almighty ever-living God, sanctify these branches with your blessing, that we who follow Christ the King in exultation, may reach the eternal Jerusalem through him. Who lives and reigns for ever and ever. Amen   GOSPEL A reading from the holy Gospel according to Mark 11:1-10 When they drew near to Jerusalem, to Bethphage and Bethany, at the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two of his disciples, and said to them, “Go into the village opposite you, and immediately as you enter it you will find a colt tied, on which no one has ever sat; untie it and bring…

PALM SUNDAY CELEBRATION: Its Significance and Spiritual Imports

Palm Sunday in the Christian tradition is the first day of Holy Week, a Christian moveable feast that falls on Sunday before Easter; which commemorates Jesus Christ’s triumphal entry into Jerusalem. It is associated in many churches with the blessing and procession of palms (leaves of the palm or twigs from locally available trees). These special ceremonies were taking place toward the end of the 4th century in Jerusalem and are described in the travelogue Peregrinatio Etheriae (The Pilgrimage of Etheria). In the West the earliest evidence of the ceremonies is found in the Bobbio Sacramentary (8th century). During the…

Sunday Readings: PASSION SUNDAY (PALM SUNDAY)

Sunday readings

LET US PRAY Almighty God, we pray you bless + these branches and make them holy.  Today we joyfully acclaim Jesus our Messiah and King.  May we reach one day the happiness of the new and everlasting Jerusalem by faithfully following him who lives and reigns for ever and ever.   GOSPEL A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew 21: 1-11. Theme: Blessings on him who comes in the name of the Lord! When they were near Jerusalem and had come in sight of Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, “Go…

THE BIG DRAMA

It is a feast of contradictions today. We celebrate the triumphal entry of a king who ends up dying like a criminal. It’s Palm Sunday and also Passion Sunday! The day of “Hosanna”,and the day of “Crucify him!” A day of acclamation – “blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord”, and a day of denials – “I do not know him!” It’s a day of paying homage – people throwing their cloaks on the road, and also a day of mockery: “Play the prophet…who hit you then?” It is a huge drama and each one of…