Well, ’tis the week of the draft and Super bowl for Catholics! Yep, you guessed by the title, it’s Holy Week! Unfortunately, Walsh is unable to celebrate holy week in its entirety because we are an extension of the St. Paul’s parish, so the diocese of Youngstown likes to see people go to their parishes, rather than to Walsh.
I couldn’t believe it when I realized that it was Holy Week already. For some reason, this past Sunday, I was really in tune to the Mass. It was unique to be serving and be able to listen to Matthew’s account of the Passion of Jesus Christ. It’s interesting because it is the only Gospel story that you will hear twice in a week (if you go to mass on Good Friday). Instead of one reader, there are essentially 4 readers; the priest portrays Jesus, one reader is the narrator, another portrays a main character, and the congregation plays the crowd. I was keenly aware of the dynamic this year. Instead of the usual Gospel which the priest or deacon reads, you get a real “scene” per say, because the different voices engage the congregation further into the story line, which is very deep.
I was reading the Pope Francis’s comments on the Gospel and I found them very fruitful. He points out that just as Jesus’ apostles fell asleep while Jesus was praying, so do we fall asleep spiritually, also known as sloth. St. Thomas Aquinas calls sloth, “sorrowing at the spiritual good”. In other words, we become lazy or indifferent to awesome things that God sets before us. And we just “yawn” at them. Also, the Pope points out that just as the disciples fled the “scene of the crime” when Jesus was arrested, so do we hide from situations which call us to be courageous in the name of faith. I thought that the Pope’s comments were good for “munchin” on a bit in contemplation. If you would like to read the article, follow this link: http://www.catholicherald.co.uk/news/2014/04/14/full-text-pope-franciss-palm-sunday-mass-homily/
Hope that this Holy Week is fruitful for everyone!