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PALM | PASSION

Sunday Cycle A
Blessing of Palms: Mt. 21: 1-11
9 April 2017
Is. 50: 4-7
Phil. 2: 6-11
Mt. 26:14-27: 66
INTRODUCTION: On Palm Sunday, our
Gospel reading is from one
of the Passion Narratives.
For Cycle A, the Passion is
from St. Matthew. All the
four Gospels end with the
Passion.

The Gospel is but "the Passion with a very long


INTRODUCTION:
In Mt.'s Passion,
Jesus journeys
towards death into
the far country of sin,
all forms of human
dysfunction that
separates us from the
love of God.
INTRODUCTION:

Throughout Mt.'s Gospel, Jesus is


presented as the friend of sinners:
"I have not come for the healthy
but for the sick." (Mt.2:17)
Throughout his life, he associates with
sinners and the marginalized.
INTRODUCTION:

Now in death, Jesus meets this


cacophony of sin in order to bring the
Divine Life there. Jesus goes into sin as
God's obedience/fidelity and thereby
absorbs its power and takes it away.
INTRODUCTION:
Howdowedealwithsin?
By sinning in return!
This is the way of the world:
sin battles sin. In Mt.'s Passion at the
end of Jesus' life, all forms of human
dysfunction are on display and into
that far country, Jesus goes!
1
How does Mt.'s Passion
open up?
With
BETRAYAL!
For 30 pieces of silver
Judas betrays Jesus his
friend, his mentor,
and his Lord.
1
In Dante's Divine
Comedy, traders are
placed at the lowest
realm of hell!
Dante saw betrayal
as the greatest of
sins for it is turning
2
Gethsemani, after the Last Supper,

Jesus goes to pray alone away from


his three favorite disciples to struggle
with the will of his Father about the
2
Sleeping
! is another form of sin --
This
SLOTH, spiritual laziness, or
indifference. We just don't care!

In Rev. 3:16 Jesus said,


"If you are
lukewarm, I will vomit you out!"
2 *Judas arrived "accompaniedbya
crowdwithswordsandclubstoarrest
him." Whom did they come for?

Jesus the Prince of Peace with


the message "Resist not evil!
Love your enemies!! Pray
for those who persecute
you. . ." (Mt.5:39-44)
2
Judas with his
companions arrive in the
Garden with VIOLENCE.
The way this sinful
world orders itself is
through violence. One of
Jesus' disciples in defense
of Jesus drew his sword and
cut the ear of the High
Priest's servant.
2
What does

do?

Violence cuts off communication.


In the midst of violence,
no one is listening; no one speaks.
Reason is overpowered by violence!
2

*At the end of the struggle, his


disciples all fled. Jesus called them
to himself to be made fishers of
men but they deserted him.
2

is another face of sin when I know what to do and


I can't muster the courage to do it. "Theonlyway
foreviltothriveisforgoodmentodonothing.
3
As the story of Jesus' encounter
with evil intensifies, Jesus is
brought to the Sanhedrin, the
equivalent to the Supreme
Court of the Jewish Nation,
where the best men in robes
call in a bunch of liars as FALSE
WITNESSES who care more for
their own gain but care less for
3

*At the Courtyard, Peter,


undoubtedly ashamed for his
desertion of his Master, follows
Jesus incognito to know how all
this will end, but is recognized by
his accent and denied it thrice.
3

One of the most terrible face


of sin is scapegoating,
a mechanism of forming
ourselves into a community
around somebody that we
can hate.
3

The detail of Peter's accent gives him


away as somebody to hate as
companion of Jesus. Those who differ
from us, we do not speak to or look at.
3
*Judas in his
despair hangs
himself.

This is the ugly face of SELF-DESTRUCTION


when I feel I am so in the dark that I can't even
bear or forgive myself.
3

This is where Peter and


Judas differ.

Peter asked forgiveness


for his denial of the Master
that Judas could not do;
he destroys himself!
3
*The Lord before Pilate,
representativeoftheRoman
Empireandspokesmanof
justice, is condemned to death
although he knew Jesus to be
innocent. Pilate caves in to the
pressure of the crowd fearing
the loss of his position.
3

This is ABUSE OF POWER


personally whether in the family
or in civil government.
CONCLUSION:
The good news in all
this is that God's own
love has reached out to
these human
dysfunctions by
pouring the Divine Life
into them.
CONCLUSION: God does not hate
sinners. He journeys into
their world and by his
truth and his love he
absorbs the sins of this
world!

This is the message of this Passion Week


we truly call Holy -- mga Banal na Araw!
+ART