In his final Passover, Jesus first entered the City of Jerusalem in glory. He was the famous prophet, healer and worker of miracles from Galilee. The citizens of the city cried out “Hosanna to the Son of David!” They threw down palm branches to carpet his path as a sign of reverence and praise as he rode into Jerusalem on the “foal of a donkey.”
Yet a few days later, this same crowd was crying “Crucify him! Crucify him!” The human spirit is so fickle, so inconsistent. And crowds are emotionally flammable and particularly susceptible to manipulation. The Prince of Darkness worked his magic among them, but this turn of events was all in the plan of the Father.
The Innocent One was then scourged and hung on a horizontal crosspiece in typical Roman fashion. Modern science has recounted the excruciating pain of this process of torture and execution. The Son of Man submitted to this gruesome death at the hands of his own creatures in order to redeem them! This outcome leaves us filled with dread, veneration and wonder at the mystery of God’s salvific plan. The sight of the crucified Christ is a specter that haunts all of human history as it is the symbol of deicide.
Christ Jesus consented to this fate for love of us. Now, everyone who gazes upon the crucifix in faith, is saved by Jesus. Now, everyone who calls upon the Blood of Christ is delivered from evil. Now, everyone who cries out, “Jesus, remember me when you enter your kingdom”, will be with him in paradise. His passion is our redemption! “By his wounds we are healed!”
We adore you, O Christ and we praise you, because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world!
Fr. Tim Byerley
The days of both Fast and Abstinence during Lent are Ash Wednesday and Good Friday.
The other Fridays of Lent are days of Abstinence.
On a day of Fast, only one (1) full meal is permitted. Those between the ages of 18 and 59 are obliged to fast.
On a day of Abstinence, no meat may be eaten. Those who have reached the age of 14 are obliged by the law of Abstinence.
The obligation to observe the laws of Fast and Abstinence "substantially" or as a whole is a serious obligation.
The Fridays of the year, outside of Lent, are designated as days of Penance, but each individual may substitute for the traditional abstinence from meat some other practice of voluntary self-denial as Penance.
The time for fulfilling the Paschal Precept (Easter Duty) extends from the First Sunday of Lent (March 5, 2017) to the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity (June 11, 2017).