According to news reports, a tired looking Pope Francis addressed a crowd of over 100,000 people who were packed into St. Peter's Square for Palm Sunday Mass. The Pope challenged the crowd to look into their hearts to see how they are honestly living their lives.
He also challenged the large crowd (as well as himself) to ask themselves: "Who am I? Who am I before my Lord? Who am I before the Jesus who enters Jerusalem amid celebration? Am I able to express my joy and praise him? Or do I keep a distance? Who am I before the Jesus who suffers?"
I think that's a great question to ponder during Holy Week. Who am I before the Jesus who suffers?
This morning at Mass I refused to be the crowd and play that part and respond, "Crucify Him." I just can't bring myself to identify with the crowd and call for Jesus' crucifixion. I can't say those words.
I could never identify with Judas, Pilate, the soldiers, the misguided religious leaders or the confused apostles.
But I can identify with the women. The women who suffered along with Jesus, who loved him, who were loyal to him, who stood by the Cross in disbelief. And so when Pope Francis asks us to contemplate during this holiest of weeks, "Where is my heart?" I can have some peace in answering that question. Thankfully, gratefully my heart is where it should be-loving Jesus and being grateful for the knowledge I've been given, for the opportunities I've had to share my knowledge and deep faith but most importantly for always knowing my heart, very clearly.