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Palm Sunday (B)
Is 50:4-7; Phil 2:6-11; Mk 14:1-15, 47
A spiritual writer commented that the Passion of the Christ is not
primarily a story of the sufferings of Jesus but rather of the
greatness of his love. The Lord did suffer and his suffering was second
to none. But suffering is not necessarily salvific. Jesus' passion had
brought salvation to the world because it was a product of his
We know for a fact that pain and suffering do not always follow from
unselfish loving. Some people suffer because of their unmet personal
dreams and ambitions; others out of jealousy to the success of others;
while some others due to the effects of a vicious life. These kinds of
suffering have no salvific value. The suffering of Christ is different
because it is a result of his unconditional love for humanity. He
accepted the cross and carried it all the way to his death in order to
give life to a sinful world.
In the first reading, the prophet Isaiah delivers the third song of the
Suffering Servant which explains the salvific value of accepting
suffering for God's sake. Suffering is evil and must not be sought for
its own sake. And yet when it is accepted out of obedience to God or
for the service of one's fellowmen, then suffering indeed becomes
special and life-giving.
Saint Paul, in the second reading, describes the personal sacrifices that
Christ did for the salvation of all. He humbled himself by becoming
like us in everything except sin. He lived the life of a faithful
servant of God and he served unselfishly the needs of people. Because
he remained obedient until death, God glorified him and bestowed on him
the name which is above all names.
As we enter into the most holy of all weeks, let us try to see and reflect
deeply on our personal sufferings in the light of the sacrificial acts
of Christ. Are our sufferings a product of our love for God or simply a
result of unmet personal wants and ambitions? Are we struggling because
of a sincere desire to serve the needs of others or simply because of
bad conditions in business and work? What causes our worries and
anxieties? Do we agonize over the fact that God's will is not observed
in our families or simply because our personal wishes are not followed?
Are we troubled because we see the difficult conditions of the poor or
simply because the neighbor's business is flourishing?
If our struggles and sufferings are offshoots of our great love for God
and fellowmen, then we can hope to rise with Christ and share his
ultimate victory in heaven.
"loving is everything we need to become a better person"...
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Location : Metro Manila
Registration date : 2008-10-27
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