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The message of Cardinal Gracias on Palm Sunday

April 14, 2019


Palm Sunday marks the beginning of the most important time – Holy Week – in the Catholic calendar. On this day, palms are blessed and distributed in remembrance of Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem – He came riding on a donkey and the people waved palms and chanted ‘Hosanna’ in greeting. The liturgy also includes the reading of Christ’s Passion, as a reminder of the disturbing events of Good Friday.

For the faithful gathered on the Holy Name School grounds, waiting for the palms to be blessed, His Eminence, Oswald Cardinal Gracias, Archbishop of Bombay had this message:

Through the five Sundays of Lent, we have encountered different aspects of the Lord’s teachings – the call to repentance, the infinite mercy of God…In the time of Jesus, a soldier riding on a horse meant that he came to conquer, but when he came on a donkey, it meant that he came in peace.  Jesus comes with the ultimate message of peace – peace with God, peace with ourselves, peace with nature, peace with all people.

His Eminence invited all the people present to follow this example and go forth in peace like Jesus.

In his homily, at the Mass that followed the procession with the palms, His Eminence emphasised that the Passion narrative is a reminder and invitation to each one to embark on a pilgrimage, during Holy Week, to be transformed, and to speak out against all that kills life, that is unjust. He exhorted the people to ensure that the season of Lent, just experienced, would be life-giving and transformative.  This day is a timely reminder to ourselves that there is much more to be done to alleviate suffering and injustice.


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