Were the same people in the Palm Sunday procession in Jerusalem and in the crowds which demanded Jesus' execution a few days later. Perhaps some of the same people were at both events. More likely, however, they were two very different crowds. The former was made up of his followers and friends from Galilee, the latter from the wandering mobs that characterize any city on a big festival day.
Where were the followers of Jesus? With a few exceptions they were somewhere else. They knew they couldn't fight "city hall." They realized that the dream was over and that what they had feared all along would happen. The leaders would snatch Jesus secretly and put an end to his "good news" which they perceived as a threat to their power. What the realists among Jesus' followers had predicted all along had at last happened.
The best thing to do was to go to ground and hide till the trouble blew over. Jesus was wonderful all right, but what had he done for them lately.
Fr. Greeley's Last Book:
Once upon a time there was a basketball coach. When he came to his new school, they had not enjoyed a winning season for eight years. The media vultures naturally said he was a poor choice and pouted because no one had paid any attention to their recommendations. His first season the team broke even. The fans were unhappy. Maybe the media vultures were right. The next season, they ended up in second place in their conference. The vultures said that the team would have won if the coach had not made a lot of mistakes in key games.
Then for seven years in a row the team won their conference championship. The vultures continued to complain and the important alumni worried about how long the run could last. The following year the team finished in second place. The vultures went wild with glee. The coach was losing it. The next year was worse because the team was stricken with sickness, injuries and academic ineligibility; the coach had only one year left on his contract. .
The alumni were now whispering to the athletic director, get rid of the bum! What has he done for us lately. The athletic director agreed because he resented the coach’s popularity. They wanted to fire him on the spot. But the president of the school insisted that he be permitted to finish out his contract (Presidents sometimes have the odd notion that sports are not the only really important thing in a school.) The coach was booed at the early games as he tried to hold together a team of talented but inexperience freshmen. You know what happened then? They won the national championship and coach accented a ten million dollar contract at another university.
1 Blessed are those whose way is blameless, who walk
in the law of the LORD!
Catholics and the Struggle with Their Church
The survey of the archdiocese, which Father Greeley describes as "a very complicated place" demographically, asks some difficult questions, and finds some interesting truths.
In Memory of Father Andrew M. Greeley
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