Jesus began the very first Holy Week with a schedule and a goal. He didn’t begin the week by saying, “If I have some extra time during the next several days, I suppose I’ll give it to my heavenly Father. I’ll see what the week brings, and, if it’s convenient, I’ll do his will and save the world.” No! As he was riding that donkey into the city of Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, Jesus knew exactly what he planned to do on Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter Sunday.
It was already written into his schedule. He knew that on Holy Thursday he would institute the Eucharist and the Priesthood at his “Last Supper.” He knew he would spend time in the Garden of Gethsemane afterward, and take upon himself the sins of the whole world. He knew he would bring those sins to the Cross the next day, and pour out his precious blood so that they could be forgiven. And, happily, he also knew he would rise from the dead three days later! We know this because he had predicted it a number of times during his ministry.
Catholics and other Christians will tell you that they want to imitate Jesus in their lives. That, of course, is a most worthy ambition. So do it! Resolve to imitate your Savior in your approach to Holy Week this year. If you’re really serious about following Jesus Christ and growing stronger in faith and charity, then do what he did on Palm Sunday: Make a schedule and set a goal — a spiritual goal — for yourself. The goal may be to come to a deeper understanding of God’s love for you; it might be to find the strength you need to carry your cross; it might be to find the grace to be more charitable or patient.
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