Palm Sunday has profound meaning for those who call themselves followers of Jesus Christ. For many, the truth of that meaning was formed in them as children. Born from their earliest memories of excited celebrations at church, where all took part regardless of age or status. And one of those particularly joyous and counter-cultural celebrations was the liturgy of the palms. Many may recall taking those palms home after church, seeing who could twist and shape them into a cross. Many would place them somewhere in their home and come across them unexpectedly throughout the next weeks or months.
When you came upon them there was a spark of recollection that transcended the expected. You found that you were suddenly in a place that ignites the presence of God. That was certainly true for me. I didn’t understand the true meaning of this until many years later, when I happened to pass by an Episcopal Church one Sunday morning in New York City. That Sunday I saw the Palm Sunday procession, that sacred reenactment Christians have been celebrating since that day two-thousand years ago on the Mount of Olives.
The power of this memory is the same kind of recollection you have when you hear a piece of music that transports you back to a life changing moment or experience… and yet sometimes, you’re not completely sure what about that memory has become a part of you. What we know, however, is that we are at the start of the Holy Week journey, the Passion of Christ to save us from the worst of ourselves, to move us to a place of holy liberation. This journey is marked by blessing upon blessing. It is about being called by the Lord of Heaven to take our place by His side. It is at the beginning, when we are called to untie the “colt,” to follow the agent of our salvation into the depths of this journey. Join us for Holy Week at St. Peter’s. Palm Sunday is just the beginning.
The Reverend Keith C. Lane, Assisting Priest