This past winter was strangely very mild and the bulbs began to poke through the soil in February, something almost unheard of in our region of the Northeast of the United States. Most commented about the early sprouts, that this was bad because cold weather might be in store and this could damage or kill the buds and we would have to wait another year for them to bloom.
Yet the cold snap people feared never came. Through March the bulbs continued to mature and then even little flowers began to be visible. It was then, just a few weeks ago that we had some plumbing work done. On returning we found the bulbs we had been following all this time crushed. They had been stepped on. The beautiful buds were destroyed. A couple of intact flowers remained. It was a sad sight. We were so disappointed. Trying to keep my spirits up I tried to let go of it and had the happy thought that maybe the following spring we would have flowers. Not this year I thought but next. We had to wait. It would be okay.
Yet we were to have a big surprise. As the rains came and the warm sun, something amazing happened. The bulbs did not give up. They kept growing. Even the bulbs we thought were completely destroyed managed to display amazing beauty. The smell! Who could describe the smell of hyacinth? This is the best part of these bulbs. Even more important than their beauty is their smell. They smell heavenly. We did not have to wait until next year. The flowers seemed even more precious since they defied all the unfortunate effects of being trampled upon.
Today during Palm Sunday Mass I thought of these flowers. I thought of how they were crushed. Yet despite all adversities such as we are undergoing with the Coronavirus Pandemic, the bulbs bloomed and gave off a heavenly fragrance. As we go into Holy Week, let us not give up on this blessed time and say, "We will have to wait until next year to have a true 'Holy Week.'" Let us see that we are not counted out. We can still come close to Our Lord even if we cannot step foot in a Church. We can spend time with Our Lord in prayer. Our Lord does not forget us. God's Providence never fails in its designs. I would never have wished for the flowers to be trampled but something very beautiful indeed followed. Unexpected surely but possibly more precious as a result.