Mark’s account of the Gospel is the oldest canonical Gospel and dates to sometime between 50 and 67 AD. He was the first to take on the challenge of relating what really happened to Jesus and how the event of the passion was a fulfilment of God’s plan for Him and for our salvation. In his account, many persons respond to Jesus in many different ways. A woman anoints him with perfumed oil, anticipating his burial. At the Last Supper, Peter and the rest of the Apostles swear they will never deny him. In Gethsemane, the apostles sleep. Judas betrays Jesus with a kiss. In fear, a young man runs away naked. During the trial, many give false witness. Peter denies Jesus three times. Pilate hands him over to be crucified. Soldiers mock him. Simon of Cyrene helps him carry the cross. Soldiers crucify him. The centurion testifies that Jesus is the “Son of God”. At the crucifixion, many women remained present. Joseph of Arimathea buries Jesus. During Jesus’ last hours, only a few faithful people stand by Jesus. Most do not.


In our Christian journey, at one point or the other we act like some of the characters during his passion. We praise him, we swear to always defend him. But then we deny him and pretend we never knew him. We run away as soon as others identify us as his disciples and rain curses on ourselves by identifying with cheap popularity rather than holiness. When we run into trouble, we run back to him and make endless vigils in order to obtain favours. Some of us are faithful and we stay with God no matter the problem or discomfort. We persevere even with great temptations to defect. We stand because we have chosen to cooperate with God’s grace.

As you hear this passion proclaimed, where do you stand?

St Andrew of Crete advises us in these words:

“Let us run to accompany him as he hastens toward his passion, and imitate those who met him…by being humble and by trying to live as he could wish….Let us spread before his feet before him the garment of our lives. Now that the crimson stains of our sins have been washed away in the saving waters of baptism (and through the observances of fasting, prayer and almsgiving), our souls should take the place of the welcoming branches as we join our voices to all God’s children everywhere singing, “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Blessed is the King of my heart!”

Prayer: Lord, give me the heart of a true disciple; to stand for you in good and bad times and obtain the reward for which you died for me.

Today’s Readings: Mk 11:1-10; Isa 50:4-7; Ps 22:8-9,17-20,23-24; Philp 2:6-11; Mk 14:1-15:47





Ex 20:1 “God said: I am the Lord your God…you shall have no gods except me.”

Ps 19:7 “The law of the Lord is perfect, it revives the soul. The rule of the Lord is to be trusted, it gives wisdom to the simple.”

1Cor 1:23,24 “Here we are preaching a crucified Christ; to the Jews an obstacle, to the pagans madness, but to those who have been called, the power and the wisdom of God.”

Jn 2:21,22 “He was speaking of the sanctuary that was his body and when Jesus rose from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this…”



God loves you so much. It is this love that made him come after us when we turned against him through the disobedience of our first parents. His love for us made Him bring us out of slavery to sin as He did with the Israelites to give them a land of their own. In love, God gave us the Decalogue (Ten Commandments) to instruct us afresh on how to love him and our neighbour. In love, He sent us His only Son to show us how to live out what he has already been engraved on stone tablets. Jesus came to write the laws our hearts where they can never be erased (Jer 31:33; Heb 8:10). Jesus came to give life to our worship of God so that we see the Church as His mystical body on earth. Since God resides in you, your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit (1Cor 6:19,20). Jesus is the power and wisdom of God for all who believe in Him; your belief should lead you to love God. Your sacrifices and offerings will be empty unless they are made in thanksgiving. Let God’s word instruct you, his example guide you and his spirit work through you.

Prayer: Lord, give me light to know you, strengthen me will to love you and give me grace to witness to you in words and actions.


Did You Know?

By chasing out animals from the temple, Jesus was signalling the end of animal sacrifices. Salvation was no longer to be found in the blood of goats, sheep and birds. Salvation now depends on the efficacy of the blood of Jesus. He shows us that the correct channel to reach the Father is through himself, the true sacrifice pleasing to God. Jesus is now the victim, the altar and the priest of the new sacrifice. After his resurrection, the Holy Mass, the celebration of the Holy Eucharist has replaced all sacrifices. Those who shall partake of this sacrifice are those who have been instructed by the Word of God and who are willing to bear witness to God through a life of faith, hope and love.

Today’s Readings: Ex 20:1-17; Ps 19:8-11; 1Cor 1:22-25; Jn 2:13-25





From the Readings

Gen 22:16 -18 “Because you have not refused me your son, I will shower blessings on you…as a reward for your obedience.” Ps 116:17 “Your servant, Lord…a thanksgiving sacrifice I make; I will call on the lord’s name.” Rom 8:34 Christ not only died for us – he rose from the dead and there at God’s right hand he stands and pleads for us. Mk 9:7 “This is my Son, the Beloved. Listen to Him.”

The Illusion of Disobedience

A Christian lifestyle is a comprehensive package; every aspect of your life must come under the influence of God. God wants to restore you to friendship with Him, and be the author and perfecter of your being. The perfection of the human person lies in the submission of his will to his Creator. It was disobedience that got us into trouble the first time with the delusion of freedom. True freedom is when you listen to and obey the voice of God, like Abraham, and not the world with its false promises. God speaks to you today through the event of Christ’s transfiguration.

Lessons from the Transfiguration

Christ’s Transfiguration teaches us a number of things:

He transfigures to show us what we shall be if we obey the Father through his life and teaching;

His transfiguration confirms the reality of heaven and the reward of all who do God’s will;

The transfiguration encourages you to strive after holiness and realize that heaven is greater than the vanities and sufferings of this life (cf. Rom 8:18);

Jesus reveals to us that all our fasts, denial, prayers, penances, almsgiving and participation in the sacraments shall be rewarded;

Jesus also shows us that if we come away with him from the world’s distraction to the mountain of the Eucharistic altar, the door of our souls will be opened to higher things (Heb 12:22). God wants to reside in your heart and begin the process of your transfiguration from within.

Your Transfiguration Process

The transfiguration process must begin in your mind and in the way you perceive yourself; you are God’s child. You must be transfigured in your heart and in the way you perceive your neighbour; you must love and pray for them. You must be transfigured in the things you say and realise that your lips should speak only words that glorify God. You must be transfigured in the way you treat your body; it is the temple of the Holy Spirit (1Cor 6:19). You must be transfigured in the way you treat other persons since they are created in God’s image and likeness (Gen 1:27).

In Christ’s transfiguration, we see an obedient God-man and how obedience can transform you into something beautiful. With obedience to God, you will become more like God and more of yourself.

PRAYER: Lord, teach to listen to your Son and be more focused on making you known and loved through my actions.

Today’s Readings: Gen 22:1-2,9-13,15-18; Ps 116:10,15-19; Rom 8:31-34; Mk 9:2-10

Q. How Do I know that God is SPEAKING to me?

A. God speaks to you when you faithfully read the Scriptures. He speaks when you listen to the Church. God also speaks when you pray and seek discernment from your priests and religious leaders. God speaks to you in the things that you do each day and calls you to love Him in those you meet. God’s word calls you to listen to Christ in all your experiences and see that you can be transfigured by them.

#20 Wave Your Palms!

Dear Doctimus Prime,
Next Sunday is Palm Sunday and I am excited. I am excited because I have another opportunity to join others in waving those green branches to acclaim Jesus, “King of the world”! I am also excited because the 40 days of Lent is coming to its dramatic close with the Holy Week, the week in which Christ redeems us from sin, Satan and death.


PALM SUNDAY is the Sunday before Easter Sunday. On this day, Jesus enters Jerusalem as foretold in the Old Testament and its account is given in the four Gospels (Mk 11:1-10; Mt 21:1-11; Lk 19:28-38; Jn 12:12-16). The subject of Palm Sunday is the account of Jesus openly entering Jerusalem. The people rushed to meet Him because of His miracles and fame. He entered riding a donkey, and the people spread palm branches before Him as a sign of welcome and honour. The principal ceremonies of the day are the blessing of the palms, the procession, the Mass, and during it the singing of the Passion.


Symbolism of Palm Branches

On the altar, branches of palms are placed between the candlesticks instead of flowers ordinarily used. Palm branches have been used by many nations as an emblem of joy and victory over enemies. In Christianity (and Catholicism especially), it is used as a sign of victory over the flesh and the world according to Psalm 91:13. We learn on this day that anyone can turn against Jesus at any moment in spite of their devotion to Him.


The Drama of the Passion

The drama of Christ’s entry into Jerusalem introduces us into a paradox and an irony. The paradox is that this same crowd that spreads palm branches and clothes on the floor chanting and dancing “Hossana to the Son of David” (Ps 118:26; Mk 11:9-10) will in five days’ time cry, “Crucify him!!!” The irony, however, is that although they demand his life, Jesus freely offers it for their sake. The name given to him in mockery is his actual name; He is the “King of the Jews” and the King of kings. They, like us, were quick to profess their admiration and love for Him, yet little did they know that most of them would be crying for His death on Good Friday, that very week!


More Than Words

The event of Palm Sunday shows us that faith is not just a matter of words. Your life should be an eloquent testimony to what you believe. You have to do more than simply believe in Jesus; you have to understand how that affects your whole life. Jesus has to be at the centre of your thought, words and deeds. You need to take the word of God seriously; the sacraments of Confession and the Eucharist should be your steady companion. The people you meet each day and the things you do are opportunities for you to GIVE GLORY AND PRAISE TO GOD. Faith is a verb and not just a noun. Only then will you truly wave the palm branch of your soul, a holy and acceptable sign to Jesus, the true King of the World and the King of your soul.


All Hail the King!

Jesus is a king who destroys the weapons of war, a king of peace and a king of simplicity, a king of the poor. Palm Sunday reminds us of the new world-encompassing kingdom of Jesus that extends from sea to sea in the communities of the breaking of the bread in communion with Jesus Christ, as the kingdom of his peace … Jesus is not building on violence like corrupt politicians; he is not instigating a military revolt against Rome. His power is of another kind: it is in God’s poverty and peace that he identifies the only power that can redeem. Pledge allegiance to Him and to others as long as they follow Him.