On Hosanna Sunday we welcome Jesus as King just as the children and people of Jerusalem welcomed him into their city. Jesus asks his disciples to bring a donkey for him to ride on into the city of Jerusalem. This has great significance as it is foretold in the book of Zechariah that the saviour will come riding on a donkey.
“Rejoice greatly, O daughter Zion! Shout aloud, O daughter Jerusalem! Lo, your king comes to you;triumphant and victorious is he, humble and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.” Zechariah 9:9
Jesus is therefore fulfilling a prophecy. It also signifies that He is a King for all people, He has come for the rich and poor. The donkey is therefore a symbol of the breaking of the hierarchy of royalty. The people who witnessed this event, saw this Messianic sign and begun to follow Him, some even climbed trees in order to see Him. The crowd begun shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest heaven!” Matthew 21:9
Jesus is revealing himself during the Jewish feast of the Passover to signify that he has come to be the new lamb to be sacrificed. Its only a matter of time now when Jesus will be crucified for the redemption of our sins. Just as the Jewish would sacrifice a lamb for the forgiveness of their sins, Jesus will be sacrificed.
In the Maronite Church, Hosanna Sunday is celebrated with Mass and a procession of the people and children, bearing decorated candles to signify that Jesus is the light of the world. Let us lead our children to Christ, He is the light of the world, that has come for the redemption of the world. Let us enter Passion week with no fear to share in Jesus’ passion. As we look very carefully at Jesus our Saviour, we watch, not to just admire, but also to learn the attitudes and values of Jesus so that we, in the very different circumstances of our own lives, may we walk in His footsteps. Jesus invites us to walk His way, to share in His suffering, and also live in service of others and love others as He loves us. As we offer up our sacrifices let us keep in mind all those who are suffering in the world, including the people in Syria and the innocent children of war.