Homily: March 20, 2016
March 20, 2016 - Palm Sunday, YEAR C; Rev. Phil Boelter, Vicar
“The Lord has need of it.”
These words are spoken in our gospel reading
to the owner of a lowly donkey.
Without that donkey,
the whole Palm Sunday scene would be impossible-
or at least not as much fun!
Jesus was soon to be acclaimed by the roaring crowds
in the streets of Jerusalem
as the Son of David, the Messiah.
And the donkey played her part.
But the donkey herself probably was not even aware
of the fact that her furry back was destined
to be Christ’s throne.
You and I are that donkey.
The lowliest animal provides the greatest example.
For deep down in our very beings we are created,
like the donkey.
to bear Christ to the world.
We are chosen
to have that mind in ourselves that was in Christ Jesus,
as Paul says in our second reading.
According to Paul,
we are created to pour ourselves out in service to the world,
just as Christ himself did
when he gave his life for us on Good Friday.
Christ’s death is called the Passion.
because he poured himself out for us
in a passionate loving embrace of the whole world.
How does that passion work itself out in our lives?
We think about other people’s needs more than we think about our own.
We seek the good of others around us.
We offer the hand of friendship and help wherever we are.
It is then that we are most like the donkey from Palm Sunday.
More to the point,
It is in our lives of loving service that we are most like Christ.
In that way
We bear Christ into the classroom,
onto the street,
throughout our homes and neighborhoods.
It is there that Christ longs to be present
To us and through us to others….
And Christ can only be there,
When we ourselves are present to others
As Christ has made himself present to us.
Teresa of Avila was a passionate woman who lived
During the late Middle Ages.
Born in Spain,
Teresa entered a Carmelite convent when she was eighteen,
and later earned a reputation as a mystic, reformer, and writer
who experienced divine visions.
She lived life fully,
And turned that passion
Toward reform of an ailing Church.
In her passion she wrote:
Christ has no body but yours,
No hands, no feet on earth but yours,
Yours are the eyes with which he looks
Compassion on this world,
Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good,
Yours are the hands, with which he blesses all the world.
Yours are the hands, yours are the feet,
Yours are the eyes, you are his body.
Christ has no body now but yours.