Holy Week

Palm Sunday, Jerusalem 2007
Palm Sunday Jerusalem, 2000
Our traveling group of missionaries, 2000
Carmelita, Lita, Melinda, Leah and me 2000

Though I have visited the Holy Land for over twenty years,  I have only celebrated Palm Sunday in Jerusalem twice. This was back in the day when our travel group numbered over forty. The years were 2000 and 2007, and I was much younger and more energetic. I remember meeting the procession of a large group of pilgrims taking the same path as Jesus as He rode in on the donkey. There was a long passage leading to the Mount of Olives Jewish Cemetery. Going down to the Old City was fine, but it was the trek back that really wore us out. Years ago we rarely took a taxi into the Old City because we were physically fit to walk and safety was not an issue at that time.

Carmelita, me, Melinda and Leah praying at the Stone of Unction located at the entrance of the Church of Holy Sepulcher, 2000

Palm Sunday was like a celebration as free-spirited individuals gathered to usher in the Lord’s triumphal entry. The crowd got thicker as we made our way into the Old City through the Lion’s Gate. The music was cheerful and people were dancing and playing tambourines. I was caught up in the joyous moment and imagined how it was in the times of Jesus and how He was welcomed with great jubilance. Thank God our group was wearing matching baseball caps and red teeshirts; otherwise we could have easily been separated.  This was the longest time that I was away from home; this trip was twenty-one days long.

Palm Sunday

All four Gospels mention Palm Sunday, which is also known as Passion Sunday. This is the first day of Holy Week.




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