Date: March 26, 2021
Palm Sunday, or the Sunday of the Passion, is this weekend. The day begins by marking Christ’s triumphal entry into Jerusalem. Many churches participate in the Liturgy of the Palms, first offered in The Episcopal Church in the 1960 Book of Offices. In this liturgy, the celebrant blesses palms or other branches, and, following a reading from the Gospels, leads the congregation in procession into their church (pre-COVID times) —often singing “All Glory, Laud, and Honor” or “Ride On! Ride On In Majesty!”
This liturgy evokes the early observances of Palm Sunday. According to Armentrout and Slocum’s An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church (Church Publishing, 2000), by the year 381, the faithful would process from the Mount of Olives into Jerusalem, waving palm or olive branches. As they processed, they sang songs from Scripture – including the exultant antiphon of Psalm 118 sung at Christ’s entrance into the city: “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”
Please do remember to pause and celebrate the day.
The Very Rev. Ian S. Markham, Ph.D.
Dean and President