Mass Schedule:
Saturday: 4:00 p.m. (Main Church)
Sunday: 7:30 a.m., 9:00 a.m., 11:00 a.m. (Main Church)
Weekday Mass: 8:00 a.m. (Serra Chapel)
Saint Barbara Parish
Old Mission Santa Barbara
2201 Laguna Street
Santa Barbara, CA


Palm Sunday of the Lord’s Passion

Dear Friend,

Palm Sunday of the Lord’s Passion is full of more drama than just about any other Sunday of the year. And well it should be, as the events unfolding through our liturgy and scriptures in the week ahead are meant to draw us deeply into the great drama of our lives of faith: the action of God’s love for us through Jesus Christ. The symbol of the palm brings that drama into focus. The crowds cut branches from the trees and spread them on the ground as Jesus entered Jerusalem in triumph, “meek and riding on an ass.” The road covered by palms at the same time leads to Calvary. Father Franklin was expressing that contrast quite well yesterday as he wove palm branches into small crosses, something many of us do at this time of year.

In Jesus, God becomes humble that we might draw closer to him and share divine life in communion with him. This week – even with our sheltering in place – we have at least two opportunities to focus on our story by making the symbols of our faith more public. I invite you to find a branch – maybe a reed from a palm branch – or something green (with hope) and tie it to your front door. This would be a variation on the Christmas wreath, that other great sign of Christ’s coming to the world in humble love.

Second, on the evening of Holy Saturday, why not light a candle at sunset and place it in a front window in your home? Let it burn from 7 pm until you go to bed. This suggestion came to us last week from Archbishop Gomez: “Place a candle outside your home or in your window and show your trust in the Lord.” Why not make this happen on the evening of the Easter Vigil? Good dramatic timing, I’d say, a chance to create a lasting memory of hope touching the drama we’re living through right now.


Fr. Dan ofm, Pastor