by Christine Sine
With Palm Sunday just two weeks away I wanted to make sure that I got my resource list updated. I am reposting them this year so that it is easy for everyone to find them. Palm Sunday commemorates the entrance of Jesus into Jerusalem (Matthew 21:1–9), when palm branches were placed in his path, before his arrest on Holy Thursday and his crucifixion on Good Friday. It thus marks the beginning of Holy Week, the final week of Lent.
Litanies for Palm Sunday
We are entering the most subversive week of Jesus life – it begins with shouts of Hosanna but ends with shouts of crucify him. Read more in my post Meditation Monday – The Subversive Walk of Holy Week. This litany from Catacomb Churches also focuses on this contrast.
In many churches, after a walk around the church waving palms, the litany actually focuses on the passion of Christ. This is because the following Sunday is Easter Sunday and though most churches hold services throughout Holy Week, some people will not come to church again until Easter Sunday.
This Palm/Passion litany from the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America is an example of this.
Fran Pratt has a beautiful Palm Sunday litany that you might like to look at too.
There are of course a huge number of resources available for this season but I particularly wanted to highlight some of the out of the box, creative ideas I have come across.
Use a Little Creativity
Here is another very creative and interactive liturgy from Rowland Croucher at John Mark Ministries in Australia.
Rebecca Joy Sumner’s idea for creating a labyrinth listening walk through the neighbourhood is not specifically for Palm Sunday but I think would create a great Palm Sunday walk.
Or you might like to download this Palm Sunday labyrinth. I think it would be a great focus for meditate on Palm Sunday.
I have posted other creative suggestions on my Holy Week and Easter Pinterest board.
Palms for Crosses and Fronds
If you are concerned about whether or not the palms you are using are eco friendly check out this site.
Or if you don’t know how to make palm crosses check this out. It’s not hard once you know what to do.
Traditional resources for Palm Sunday.
I love the collection of Palm Sunday images at Ennis Blue.
And another great “global arts collection” for Palm Sunday that helps us appreciate the ways different cultures view this event.
Anglican Prayer updated this list for Palm Sunday in 2014. Most of the links still work.
Work of the People also always has good video clips available
Some great downloadable resources from the Mennonite Church Canada.
A powerful film clip Scattered Palms from The Work of the People.
Getting Creative with our Palms
On Saturday I posted these suggestions on what to do with our palms after the Sunday service. I like to hang onto mine to burn on Ash Wednesday the following year but there are lots of other creative things to do with them.
Minas Thomas has created a whole series of videos on palm weaving from a Coptic Christian perspective that are well worth viewing. He instructs us on everything from a simple cross to braiding of palm fronds and, a more complex Coptic cross and a donkey. Here is the link to the first video:
Reach Out To the Neighborhood for Palm Sunday
I encourage you think about ways to make the Palm Sunday procession a way to reach out to your neighbourhood rather than a way for your church to just have fun walking around singing songs. Maybe an invitation to a Sunday Easter lunch or another church event. Hilary and Trevor Horn who live in our upstairs apartment went around the neighborhood recently giving succulents to all the people who have moved in over the last year. I think this would be a great activity for Palm Sunday.
My favourite Palm Sunday Songs.
Benedictines of Mary have beautiful music for all seasons of the liturgical calendar including their Easter at Ephesus recording. Here is a glimpse of their beautiful music:
This post is part of a series on resources for Holy Week. Check out other posts in the series:
Please check out our complete list of Godspace resources for Lent through Holy Week