It’s Passiontide. The flowers are scarce in churches. The next time flowers will be seen will be at the Altar of Repose on Holy Thursday eve, the beginning of the Sacred Triduum. But, outside the Church, creation simply must provide some flowers for the Immaculate Conception. Flowers are everywhere to be seen, so many in gardens, but especially on the trees, so many of them appropriately the liturgical color for penance and suffering. One might be lulled into thinking that all is well, that nothing untoward is round about. But the violence which tortured to Jesus to death is all around. Our Lady has always known, always has seen the bigger picture. But we can be so easily distracted, so that amidst all the beauty the death of our Lord is totally unexpected? How could that happen? we ask with an innocence that we don’t even know is feigned. We need only look inside to see what our Lord has done for us, what He will do for us, and then that death of His won’t be so unexpected. Then, instead of pretending we don’t know what is going on, we will stand with our Lady under the Cross.