Palm Sunday Optimism
Michael Moore OMI
"His entry in to the city begins on a huge wave of optimism, joy and hope. The people line the streets; they wave palms, they put their cloaks and garments on the ground and they shout out his name. This was an ancient Roman tradition used to welcome soldiers and armies home after their success in battle. The crowd welcome Jesus in a similar way as they shout out, Hosanna, Hosanna, blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord."
Pat Stockett Johnston
"We see the response of the pilgrims when they spied Jesus' entrance to Jerusalem: Ecstatic. Hopeful. Optimistic. They thought Jesus would set up an earthly kingdom and free them from Roman bondage. They were confident of His victory. After all, they had seen His miracles. Anyone who could raise Lazarus from the dead could surely liberate them from Rome."
George Werner, SMM
"Palm Sunday begins a week of hope, a reminder to everyone of their God-given right to get up in the morning and feel positive, buoyant and optimistic. This is true even when things go wrong; when a young person is refused entry into school; a friend faces divorce; a colleague loses a job; you fall ill; a loved one is in an accident; your child encounters difficulty; the message of Palm Sunday is that beyond these sufferings, hope and "resurrection" lie ahead."
Fr. Craig M. Kallio
Palm Sunday has the feel of a mini-celebration. There is something festive about today. It is a glimpse of a coming joy; as conventionally celebrated in our church, Palm Sunday is religious optimism at its best. There were times as a young lad that my parents even allowed me to wear my new Robert Hall suit on Palm Sunday as if this were a mini Easter.
Pope Francis in "Message of the Holy Father for the 35th World Youth Day 2020"
"Let us now turn to this year’s theme: “Young man, I say to you, arise!” (cf. Lk 7:14). I mentioned this verse of the Gospel in Christus Vivit: “If you have lost your vitality, your dreams, your enthusiasm, your optimism and your generosity, Jesus stands before you as once he stood before the dead son of the widow, and with all the power of his resurrection he urges you: ‘Young man, I say to you, arise!’” (No. 20)."
"There's no denying how difficult is it to maintain optimism and hope in the face of tough times. But Jesus is our anticipation and our expectation."
Respond: Sit back and soak in the Palm Sunday experience. Imagine the swarms of people in the energized crowd; clamoring over each other to see Jesus. Jesus is riding on a colt, people are laying down palm branches before Him and others are waving palm branches towards Him. The shouting of blessings and hope about Jesus are ringing in the air. Optimism and joy are flooding the streets of Jerusalem. Join in the celebration of Jesus being your King of Kings by spending a few minutes praising Jesus for what He has done in your life thus far and what is to come. Carry this thought of celebration and praise towards Jesus with you throughout the day. You can do this through breath prayers. A breath prayer is an ancient Christian practice dating back to at least the sixth-century. They are short, simple prayers that can be said in a single breath and repeated numerous times throughout the day.
Here are some ideas of breath prayers to get you started. Inhale, “Blessed is He,” and then exhale, “who comes in the name of the Lord.” Inhale, “Jesus,” and then exhale, “You are my King.” Inhale, “Jesus,” and then exhale, “I praise you.” Inhale, “He is good;” and then exhale, “His love endures forever.” Inhale, “I will give thanks to you, Lord,” and then exhale, “with all my heart.”