Sunday, April 1, 2012

Olive Branches

"The children of the Hebrews welcomed Christ the King. They carried olive branches and loudly praised the Lord: 'Hosanna in the hightest.' " (Procession Antiphon Passion Sunday)

Today begins the holiest week of the year where we celebrate the Lord's passion death and resurrection.

This year we'll be celebrating Holy Week at the North American College as a seminary community. It rotates every two years. After Holy Week I'll still have another week off from classes in which I'll be free to travel.

The picture is of the crucifix in my room. Ever since I've been a child I've always put the palm branches behind the crucifix in my room. And if you're wondering the other two pictures are of Blessed John Paul II and Our Lady of Mt. Carmel. I was surprised to find olive branches set out rather than palm branches, but as you can see from the procession antiphon of today's Mass olive branches are mentioned. I was struck later in the day by the olive branch above my bed. I was reminded of the story of Noah and the ark. The dove that Noah sends out after the flood is carrying and olive branch, a beautiful image for us, one of peace and of the promise of salvation.

Know of my prayers for you all as we journey together, even though from different parts of the world, to Jerusalem to join our Lord in his passion, death and glorious resurrection.

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