Catholic Contemplative Affiliation

Sunday Readings

Passion Sunday (Palm Sunday), April 5, 2020

Readings:  Isaiah 50.4-7;  Philippieans 2.6-11;  The Passion According to St. Matthew 26:14 – 27:66

(Note: because of the epidemic, you will not able to assemble for Liturgy.  Follow the printed Liturgy and be aware of this meditation.)


Two Points of Prayer: Contemplative Practice and Litugy
Connect two moments in your life of prayer.
The first is your silent prayer of contemplation.  You give yourself to prolonged periods of being present in silence to the work and presence of God within you. 
The second is that you will share in the today’s Catholic Liturgy.  You will receive and hold blessed palms in your hands.  Most likely you will go in procession with those palms.  The climax of it all is the mystery of the Sacrificial Eucharist and Holy Communion.
From the prayer for the blessing of the palms: “Almighty ever-living God, sanctify these branches with your blessing, that we, who follow Christ the King in exultation, may reach the eternal Jerusalem through him.  Who lives and reigns forever and ever.”
The act of quiet love by which we surrender in prayer is one with the liturgical act of holding the palms as a symbol of our self-gift to Christ Jesus in His Mystery of death and resurrection in the midst of the assembly of faith, the Church.  The liturgy of Christ’s Mystery in the fullness of His Catholic Church and our surrender to the Triune God in our contemplative practice are one act of faith, hope and love.
The Second Reading: The Essence of the Contemplative Life
Take the Second Reading especially as the prime word on the contemplative life.  Your attitude must be Christ’s:  though he was in the form of God he did not deem equality with God something to be grasped at.  Rather, he emptied himself and took the form of a slave … and it was thus that he humbled himself, obediently accepting even death, death on a cross!
The silence of our prayer and the prayer of Liturgy share in the obedience of Christ.  One with Jesus in the Holy Spirit we surrender in obedience to the Father in the reality of our human condition.  In this way we have the attitude—the mind of Christ.  The whole meaning of our lives is transformation in Christ into the image and likeness of Christ by Whom we were created and redeemed.
The First Reading: Obedience Essential to the Life with God
Obedience to our rule of life then becomes simple yet exacting.  In every circumstance and relationship we seek to surrender to the love of Christ.   We live by the faith that there is absolutely nothing that can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus.  Every blessing and every pain in our daily life call for surrender in the obedience of the crucified Christ.  Thus we are servants of God like Christ is the Servant of Yahweh.  That is the message of the First Reading:
The Lord God has given me a well-trained tongue, that I might know how to speak to the weary a word that will rouse them.  Morning after morning he opens my ear that I may hear; and I have not rebelled, have not turned back.  I have set my face like flint, knowing that I shall not be put to shame.
In Liturgy We Exemplify What Is in Our Heart
During the reading of the Passion let us stand in perfect silence and attentiveness.  Let our habit of prayer carry us deep into the proclamation of the Paschal Mystery that the Son of God became obedient even to death, yes, death on the cross that we may have life within the Father, within the bosom of the Holy Trinity.
The Liturgy of the Church will carry us during this Holy Week.  Our place in the midst of the Church; our place at the center of our souls in faith, hope and love, and our union with Christ in the bosom of the Trinity are all one.  Each moment is obedience to this love of God that centers us in the mystery of Christ.



William Fredrickson, Obl. Secular OSB; D.Min.


For questions, comments or other communication, please contact:
William Frederickson