SUNDAY HOMILIES FOR YEAR A
By Fr Munachi Ezeogu, cssp
Homily for Palm Sunday Procession
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The Lord Needs Them

Commemoration of the Lord's Entry into Jerusalem <> Matthew 21:1-11

This week, as we enter into Holy Week, we are going to hear many Scripture readings centred around the suffering and death of our Lord Jesus Christ and its meaning for us and for the world. As we go through the stories of Jesus, I suggest that we read them with two eyes, an eye to the past so as to appreciate what happened in Jerusalem two thousand years ago, and an eye to the present to see how we fit into these stories. Suppose I was there in Jerusalem during the first Holy Week what role would I have played? If the arrest, trial, sentencing and execution of Jesus were going on today in my own city or neighbourhood what role would I play?

We have just heard the story of Jesus asking his disciples to go a neighbouring village and bring him a donkey and a colt. If the owner of the animals asked them why they were hijacking animals that did not belong to them they would answer that the Lord needs them. Now put yourself in the place of the owner and imagine how you would react? Remember that for the ordinary people in Jerusalem at the time of Jesus, donkeys were the privileged means of transport, comparable to a car today. How would I react if I get out there after service and find some young guys trying to drive away my car and when I ask them what they are doing all they say to me is "The Lord needs it?" I would immediately call the police. That shows the difference between people of little faith like you and me and people of great faith like the anonymous owner of the donkey who deprived himself of such a great possessions and placed them at the service of the Lord.

A visiting preacher was really getting the congregation moving. Near the end of his sermon he said, "This church has really got to walk," to which someone in the back yelled, "Let her walk, preacher." The preacher then said, "If this church is going to go it's got to get up and run," to which someone again yelled with gusto, "Let her run, preacher." Feeling the surge of the church, the preacher then said with even louder gusto, "If this church is going to go it's got to really fly," and once again with ever greater gusto, someone yelled, "Let her fly, preacher, let her fly." The preacher then seized the moment and stated with utmost gusto, "If this church is really going to fly it's going to need money." There was silence. Then someone in the back seat came cried, "Let her walk, preacher."

What do I have that the Lord might need today? Am I ready to let the Lord have it even though they are so important to me? Could I let go of them simply because the Lord has need of them?

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