This is the first day of Holy Week during which Christians celebrate the Passion of Christ. Palm Sunday marks the beginning of Holy Week. The branches, blessed that day, are the sign of the victory of life over death and sin. Since 1985, at the initiative of John Paul II, this Sunday has also become the festival of youth in every diocese of the world. You may visit Good Friday Morning http://goodfridaymorning.com/ to learn more about Palm Sunday, especially for getting enough info about Good Friday 2018.
A party that attracts crowds
Palm Sunday is the “entrance porch” under which Christians pass to enter Holy Week and thus, move towards Easter. Even today, the blessing of the Rameaux attracts the faithful in number, as in the days of Jesus, when he entered Jerusalem, mounted on a little donkey walking on the coats extended by the crowd.
Each year, the gospel of Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem gives full meaning to Palm’s blessing. We relive the moments when the crowd welcomes Jesus into the city of David, like a king, as the Messiah waited for several centuries. They acclaim Jesus with the accents of “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord” and “Hosanna” (Hebrew literally means “Save then!”), and it has become a cry of triumph and joy. And trusted).
Jesus is a king but a king of peace, humility and love. It is on a donkey, a modest mount, a beast of burden that Jesus presents himself to the crowd. Zechariah had announced it (Zec 9: 9): “Behold, your king comes to you: he is righteous and victorious, humble, riding on an ass, on a colt, on the young of a donkey”.
People spread their cloaks in its path, covering it with palms as Matthieu reports: “In the crowd, most of them spread their coats on the road; others cut branches to trees and strewed their way “(Mt 21: 8).
Even today, the blessing of Palm trees attracts crowds, with a sometimes unusual audience seduced by these palms and branches of olive (or boxwood, laurel, depending on the country) that can be kept at home until next year. Symbol of life and resurrection, the branch is much more than a lucky charm. He is placed in the houses where he adorns the crucifixes: it is to bring Jesus rose into our homes.
These twigs that are taken in his hands to cheer the cross of Christ are sometimes also placed on the tombs and then assume a funerary significance. It is not only to honor the memory of a loved one, but also to express one’s own hope of renewing and blossoming one’s faith in the resurrection of Jesus Christ and of our dead.
Most often, parishes organize a procession after the blessing of the branches just before mass. In large cities, the assembly can gather up to several thousand people, as in Notre-Dame de Paris where the ritual of opening the doors of the cathedral is always impressive. The faithful then enter the church behind the priest, meaning that they accompany Christ the King to his Passion.
Testimonies reveal that Jerusalem was already celebrating the triumphal entry of Jesus into the city, the IV the century. A pilgrim named Egeria, who traveled the Holy Land in the year 380, in testimony in a manuscript found in 1884. From Jerusalem, the procession spreads around the world.