Dear brothers and sisters,
Holy Week begins today on Palm Sunday. This week is the most important week of the year for us Christians. There is no other celebration that is as important as what we celebrate this week. For that reason, even to the days of the week the adjective “holy” is added to them.
Today, Palm Sunday, we begin with the symbol of the palms that reminds us of the entrance of Jesus to Jerusalem, the place where he gave his life for our salvation.
Next Thursday, we will start with what is called the “Easter Triduum”. We will begin with the celebration of the Lord’s Supper where we remember the institution of the Eucharist and the priesthood. On Good Friday we will celebrate the passion and death of the Lord. And on Saturday we will celebrate at night the great Easter Vigil in which we celebrate the resurrection of the Lord. The Easter triduum contains these three elements or three celebrations.
We celebrate what Christ did for us when he incarnated and gave his life for us in the Easter Triduum. But the Easter Triduum is not an event that we celebrate as an event of the past. Every time we celebrate the Easter Triduum in the liturgical celebrations of Holy Week, we make present and live that event. That is what happens in the liturgical celebrations of these days. In the liturgy celebrated in community, God is present and the mysteries that we celebrate in the liturgy are present for us in a current and accessible way. That is how wonderful the liturgy is. Every time we celebrate a mystery of the life of Christ (mystery understood not as something hidden but rather as something that is revealed to us), we celebrate that this mystery is present for us today, in the place where we are and in the circumstances in which we live and the ones that we come to encounter.
In these holy days we celebrate that God continues to save us. That Jesus continues to offer his life for the forgiveness of our sins. We celebrate that death does not have the last word on us. So we celebrate the new life that Jesus gives us.
I invite you to live with faith this holy week knowing that God gives us new life with the death and resurrection of Jesus. Let us put our lives in the hands of God so that he can transform them into a new life with his resurrection that we will be celebrating in a week. Keep in mind that the Easter Triduum includes the passion, death and resurrection of Jesus. In our life, likewise, we must experience the passion, the death to our sinful self, and the resurrection to the new life with Christ.