Lenten Reflection – Palm Sunday

April 23, 2021

Christ’s Humility Creates Hope

Let us come with branches to praise Christ the Master in faith like babies, purifying our souls and crying to Him with a loud voice: Blessed are You, O Savior. —MATINS OF THE FEAST

In pronounced contrast to the conquerors of His earthly day, Christ enters the city not on a powerful war horse or at the head of an army but on a donkey. This must have seemed absurd to anyone looking for a king to defeat the Romans.

From His birth in a cave to His humiliating death on the cross, Christ’s incarnation defies human expectations for His Kingdom. It is established not through war but through love. Not through force but through humility. And we enter into it not through earthly power, success, or accomplishment but with the faith of a child.

On Palm Sunday we begin Holy Week, the final road to the Cross. Turning human paradigms on their head, Christ’s humility from birth to death creates our greatest hope: a restoration of humanity’s communion with God, a renewal of our true nature. Christ’s humility renders death powerless and brings us home to Himself.

This Holy Week and beyond, may we imitate first the One who emptied Himself! May we find assurance in His victory over death, placing in Him the hope of our salvation!

Christ has risen from the dead. By death He has trampled upon death, and to those in the tombs He has given life! —Apolytikion of Pascha

This week’s reflection is written by His Eminence Metropolitan Nicolae, of the Romanian Orthodox Metropolia of the Americas & Liaison to IOCC from the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of the United States

Icon courtesy of Petar Miloševic