Christians mark Palm Sunday
Christians in Ghana today joined their brethren around the world to mark Palm Sunday, which commemorates the triumphal entry of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem days before his arrest and crucifixion
day is also the final Sunday of and the beginning of the Holy Week on the Christian Calendar.
It is christened Palm Sunday because, according to the Gospel, the people placed Palm fronds in Jesus' path and also waved them as they hailed him amid shouts of Hosanna, with the expectation that he was the Messiah to restore peace to them.
Jesus rode a young donkey and was also welcomed by the townspeople with songs and praises, amid the throwing of their garments and on the ground for Him to ride on as a sign of homage.
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Today, faithful use palm fronds for the re-enactment of Christ's procession into Jerusalem around the world.
Children are very prominent in Palm Sunday parades in Ghana.
The palm frond has been adopted into Christian iconography to represent the victory of martyrs, or the victory of the spirit over the flesh.
From the Mary Mother of Good Counsel Catholic Church, West Airport, Hadiza Nuhhu Billa Quansah reports that Very Rev Fr. David Arko Amissah and Very Rev Fr. John Louis led the Palm Sunday ceremony.
Very Rev Fr John Louis who gave the homely said, "it is not strange for Christians to suffer for no suffering no salvation and no cross no crown."
Relating it to the world, Very Rev Louis said success does not come on a silver platter therefore, it is important to go through challenges and difficulties of life to enable one get to the top.
"When you go through suffering always remember Christ equally suffered for us on the cross just for us to have salvation, therefore, remain strong even in the face of adversity," he stated.
Tema St Alban/Matthew Anglican Church mark Palm Sunday with a procession
From the St. Alban/Matthew Anglican Church of Tema Community One, Kate Baaba Hudson reports that members on Sunday observed the Palm Sunday with a procession through major streets around the church.
The various guilds and associations wore their uniforms, which included the Guild of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Shepherds, Women’s Fellowship, Mothers Union, Sacred Hearts, Men’s Fellowship and Mass Servers, danced and also sang as they processed through the streets.
Delivering the Palm Sunday sermon, Reverend Father Julian C. S. Okine of Alban/Matthew Anglican Church, stressed the need for Christians to move away from all evil acts such as hypocrisy, jealousy, envy, backbiting, pull him down and gossiping, as these were not productive.
He said wherever we found ourselves, we should lead righteous lives for Christ to find our hearts worthy to dwell in them.
Father Okine said it was important for all to be humble, truthful, honest, as well as reliable, as we carried on our everyday lives.
“As we sit here and sing Hosana Hosana, can we avail ourselves and say that our hearts are pure and clean, so that Christ could come into our hearts and declare his mission to the world,” he asked.
Father Okine referred to the triumphal entry, where Jesus rode on a young donkey into Jerusalem.
He noted that Jesus had earlier sent His disciples to go and untie a donkey from under a tree nearby and bring it to him.
As they were going, he told them that if the owner asked them why they were removing the animal, they should tell him that the Lord had need of it.
Reverend Okine said it came to pass in those days and the disciples did as Jesus had directed them and brought the donkey.
He touched on its significance and said it was to fulfil Zechariah’s Prophecy 9: 9 which states “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem!
Behold, your king is coming to you; righteous and having salvation is he, humble and mounted on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey,” he noted.
Father Okine said, Jesus needed to sit on a donkey to declare his supremacy and royalty to the world.
He said, it also signified that for 33 years on this earth, Jesus needed to accomplish His purpose and needed only one thing, that was a donkey.
He explained those who could sit on donkeys were royals, those in authority or rich people.
The Archdeacon and Vicar, Major Ebenezer Nii Addy Laryea (Rtd), later admitted two young members, Helena Lassey and Dorcas Ayisi into the Choir and reminded them of their roles as .
He said, once they wore their uniforms, they should remember that they had a duty to sing with their voices and hearts to the glory of God.
The Chairman of the Church’s Finance Committee, Mr Michael Cobblah reminded members of the various day Born Groups, of their expected roles, towards making this year’s harvest a successful one.
The well-attended service was interspersed with beautiful hymns, gospel and melodious music by the Church Choir, led by Mr Ernest Cobblah and the church band, with Mark Cobbinah and Joseph Borquaye leading.
In attendance were the People’s Warden, Mrs Josephine Forson and the Priest’s Warden, Mrs Marian Cobblah.
At the St Barnabas parish at Wonoo in the Ashanti Region, Rev Father Andy-Rosario Nana Yaw Addison led the Palm Sunday ceremony. [PICTURES BELOW]