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Tell Us About Palm Sunday

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As March approaches, we now see a glimpse of Palm Sunday that beckons to us in our Scripture readings and in our hearts. Palm Sunday, or Passion Sunday, is a contradiction of sorts on the Lenten calendar. On Palm Sunday Christians celebrate the Triumphal Entry of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem, the week before his death and resurrection. For many Christian churches, Palm Sunday, often referred to as "Passion Sunday," marks the beginning of Holy Week, which concludes on Easter Sunday. The Bible reveals that when Jesus entered Jerusalem, the crowds greeted him with waving palm branches, and by covering his path with palm branches. Immediately following this great time of celebration in the ministry of Jesus, he begins his journey to the cross. (The biblical account of Palm Sunday can be found in Matthew 21:1-11; Mark 11:1-11; Luke 19:28-44; and John 12:12-19. ) Many times the worship service contains a "preaching of the passion," where different events in the last days of Christ are read publicly within the Eucharistic service. Palm Sunday is also called Fig Sunday, because figs were traditionally eaten that day, memorializing the fig tree cursed by Christ after his entry into Jerusalem. In England Palm Sunday was called Olive or Branch Sunday, Sallow or Willow, Yew or Blossom Sunday, or Sunday of the Willow Boughs, named for the local replacements for the traditional palm branches. Various customs have developed to celebrate Palm Sunday. In the Slavic countries, the faithful walked through their buildings and fields with the blessed palms, praying and singing ancient hymns. They then laid palm pieces on each plot of ground, in every barn, building, and stable, as a petition was made for protection from weather and disease, and for a blessing upon the produce and property. If any of this information was new to you, then you have become a little more knowledgeable about Palm Sunday. If you already know it, you get a star! (And everyone who comes to worship gets a palm!)
  
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