“We look forward to a time when the Power of Love will replace the Love of Power. Then our world will know the blessings of peace.” ~ William Gladstone

Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem on a donkey was a continuation of his peaceful campaign to teach the power of love over the love of power. It was also the action that led to his arrest and execution. While He was in procession into the city with a crowd of followers who were shouting “Hosanna to the Son of David”, on the other side of Jerusalem, Pontius Pilate, mounted on a horse, wearing armor, and accompanied by
his army, was marching in to stop any uprisings or trouble from the Jews during Passover. For Jesus, the procession with palms was one of humility, peace and compassion, while Pilate’s march was one of pride, oppression and violence.

What about Jesus’ followers in the procession with palms? Were they in sync with Jesus or were they also looking for power rather than peace? The original meaning of Hosanna was more like “please Lord save us” than the shout of praise that we understand it to be today. From what did they want Jesus to save them? They looked to Jesus, who they had come to believe was the Messiah, to save them from the
oppressing Romans by leading a rebellion that would overthrow the Romans and return Jerusalem to its former glory. They looked for power and triumph as the prophet Zechariah had foretold of the Messiah’s coming on a donkey. When they realized that their idea of glory was not what Jesus had in mind at all, their shouts became “crucify him” within a few days. The people following in both processions,
Jesus’ and Pilate’s, were driven by the love of power, not the power of love which energized Jesus.
This gospel leads me to think about nations and peoples at war, occupied, or experiencing terrorist insurgency at this time and to compare them to Jerusalem. I can picture Jesus crying over Ukraine, Afghanistan, Sudan and others as he cried over Jerusalem when he contemplated the destruction of life, peace and hope. The reach for power, whether by the Romans or the Jews, or you or me, if it be at the expense of others, is never going to allow us to flourish to become fully human. Every day we
make the choice between one procession and the other, between love and power. If you had been there on that day, which would you have chosen? May we learn to choose wisely and to love powerfully.
~ Thanks to Patricia Krasnausky, CLM for this reflection

Mother Cabrini’s retreat notes provide us with a unique view of her prayer life and spiritual journey. Her journal includes notes made during more than 40 retreats stretching from 1887 to 1911. Currently available in English under the title Journal of a Trusting Heart, it is here that we see the depths of Mother Cabrini’s desire to love and serve Jesus. The following note — a prayer, really — was written in 1895.

When Jesus entered triumphantly into Jerusalem, many good people had prepared a banquet, desiring to invite him into their homes… Poor Jesus, I am not worthy, but I would like you to come to my house for dinner. Put your hand on my head and enrich me with your grace so I may entertain you well. At table, let me occupy a seat at the place of trust at your left side, so I can serve you well and have you served in everything. Then let me rest my head on your heart that I may understand all your divine secrets and understand clearly all that you desire of me. I want to do all things well for you. Grant that I never keep you waiting at the door of my heart.

As we enter Holy Week, may our hearts echo the desires of Mother Cabrini to do all things well for our loving Jesus.

St. Frances Cabrini, pray for us.


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    José Guilherme Lopes on April 2, 2023

    Muito boa reflexão pensando bem, acho que nós humanos não sabemos ainda discernir o que queremos se é o Amor misericordioso de Deus, ou se é o poder violento e vingativo dos Homens.Salve Santa CABRINI.Feliz Domingo, Feliz Semana Santa.

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