Palm Sunday

Format for Holy Hour

Scripture Reading: Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem is recorded in all four Gospels. Pick one or more of the following to read and meditate on:

Luke 19:28–40
Mark 11:1–11
Matthew 21:1–11
John 12:12–19

Context: In John’s Gospel, just prior to Jesus entering into Jerusalem for the week of Passover, Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead. Many had come to know about this and were amazed. Imagine if that were to happen today. You would certainly be amazed or at least very curious about the miracle worker. The scribes and Pharisees, however, were filled with envy. Their envy reached a climax when Jesus entered the city riding on a donkey while the people laid palm branches before him, crying out, “Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord, even the King of Israel!” (John 12:13, RSV-CE). The scribes and Pharisees couldn’t handle the popularity of Jesus and the love so many people had for Him. With this context, prayerfully read and meditate upon the scene.

Reflection: After prayerfully reading the above passage(s), ponder this Gospel scene. Use the following points if desired:

  • Imagine you were there as a bystander. Imagine hearing about Jesus’ miracles, seeing Lazarus alive, and then seeing the crowds lay down palm branches and cry out, “Hosanna!” Try to prayerfully enter the scene.
  • Consider also the envy of the scribes and Pharisees. Imagine seeing them plot, discuss, ridicule.
  • Especially consider the high priest, Caiaphas, who said, “You know nothing at all; you do not understand that it is expedient for you that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation should not perish” (John 11:49–50, RSV-CE). He said this after Jesus raised Lazarus and just before entering Jerusalem.
  • Ponder the contrast of emotions. Some loved Jesus with great passion. Others hated Him and began to plot His death.
  • What was Jesus thinking? Recall in Luke 9:51 that Jesus was resolutely determined to go to Jerusalem for Passover. He knew what waited for Him, but He did not hesitate. Prayerfully ask our Lord for insight into His inner life during these events.

Featured Image: Jan van Orley – Entry of Christ into Jerusalem

Introduction to Meditations for Lent

  1. Life Decisions and Resolutions
  2. Palm Sunday
  3. Leading up to Holy Thursday
  4. Last Supper
  5. Agony in the Garden
  6. Jesus is Arrested and Brought Before Annas
  7. Jesus is Brought Before Caiaphas
  8. Jesus is Brought Before Pilate
  9. Jesus is Brought Before Herod
  10. Second Trial by Pilate
  11. Jesus Carries His Cross and is Crucified
  12. Jesus Speaks From the Cross
  13. Jesus Dies on the Cross
  14. Jesus’ Body in the Arms of His Mother
  15. Jesus is Buried
  16. Holy Saturday

Table of Contents

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