BRIDGEPORT—(The following is taken from Bishop’s Caggiano’s Facebook reflection on Palm Sunday) One of the striking characteristics of Holy Week is the participation of everyone in the reading of the Passion. One of the benefits of this pastoral practice is to allow us to reflect upon the sharp change that occurs in the attitude of the “crowd” towards Jesus.
More specifically, what caused the crowds to change its shouts from “Hosanna to the King of David” as we hear today as Jesus was welcomed into Jerusalem, into “Crucify Him” only a few days later?
While there may be many answers to this question, the one that deeply resounds in my own heart is the fact that the crowd turned on Jesus because it was disappointed that the Lord was not going to deliver what they wanted or expected. In short, they changed their cries because their expectations were not met.
What could cause broken expectations to lead to such betrayal? The answer is an age-old spiritual temptation. It is the temptation to believe that we know better than God, that we can tell God what to do, that we can even dare to take His place in directing the world around us. When described in these terms, humanity has not learned much since the Garden of Eden!
My friends, Holy Week invites us to get on our knees and while contemplating the Cross of Jesus, recognize that God’s ways are not our ways. In fact, God’s ways are far better than we could ever decide or imagine for ourselves. Our choice is either to follow the Lord and imitate His Death for the sake of love, or to get up and start crying “Crucify Him”.