Dear friends in Christ
We enter the Great Week today with our re-enactment of the triumphal procession of Jesus into Jerusalem which begins the saving work of our Redemption. This is always an exciting and faith-filled Week and as always I suggest that we use the days of Holy Week - especially of the Sacred Triduum - as a mini-retreat; a time apart with Our Lord as we accompany Him through the events of His Passion, Death and Resurrection. For those who are preparing to be received into Full Communion with the Church and receive the Easter Sacraments, this is an especially intensive time of preparation; please keep those in our Parish and Diocese in your prayers as they prepare to enter the life of the Church through Baptism, Confirmation and the Holy Eucharist. For some this will have been the culmination of a long process of prayerful discernment and the fruit of the prayer of others: family and friends. I hope that this culmination of the liturgical year - the Easter Vigil - will be an especially joyful moment for us all. Some words from a Homily of St Andrew of Crete set the tone for the start of our living this Holy Week:
Let us go together to meet Christ on theMount of Olives. Today he returns from Bethany and proceeds of his own free will towards his holy and blessed passion, to consummate the mystery of our salvation. Let us run to accompany him as he hastens toward his passion, and imitate those who met him then, not by covering his path with garments, olive branches or palms, but by doing all we can to prostrate ourselves before him, by being humble and by trying to live as he would wish. Then we shall be able to receive the Word at his coming, and God, whom no limits can contain, will be within us.
May God bless us and grant us all a fruitful participation in the events of this Holy Week and so bring our Lenten prayers and works to a completion in the Easter Mystery!
Msgr Kevin Hale