Palm Sunday...Triumphal entry of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem.
"It is fitting that during the week from Palm Sunday to Easter morning we turn our thoughts to Jesus Christ, the source of light, life and love. The multitudes in Jerusalem may have seen Him as a great king who would give them freedom from political oppression. But in reality He gave much more than that. He gave us His gospel, a pearl beyond price, the grand key of knowledge that, once understood and applied, unlocks a life of happiness, peace and fulfillment." President Dieter F. Uctdorf.
Palm Sunday marks the triumphal entry into Jerusalem by Jesus Christ. As He entered the city He was welcomed with praise and with people holding palm branches, hence the name "Palm Sunday." In John 12: 12-13 it is recorded: "On the next day much people that were come to the fest, when they heard Jesus was come to Jerusalem, took branches of palm trees and went to meet him, and cried, Hosanna: Blessed is the King of Israel that cometh in the name of the Lord."
Since November, I have been reading "Jesus the Christ" by James E. Talmage. When I was a Beehive, my bishop told me it was one of the most important books for me to read and every time he spoke with me he would ask if I had read it yet. Looking back, I am surprised he thought I was smart enough to understand it. Now that I am an adult, it's still a more difficult book than I am used to, so it has taken me a while. I only read one chapter at a time so I can think about what I have learned. My timing has been such that as Easter approaches I am in the chapters that chronicle the last week of the Savior's life. Reading them is like walking with Him on his final journey as His earthly mission comes to a close. I feel like I am getting to know and understand Him better.
Starting a new Easter tradition...
There is a growing trend within the church of families observing Holy Week, following Christ's footsteps into Jerusalem, to the temple, to the upper rooms of the Last Supper and into the Garden of Gethsemane. Beginning with Palm Sunday, some parents have created activities for their children that help them celebrate a more Christ-centered Easter.
I came across an LDS blog with a lot of ideas for parents. The blog post is called: Holy Week: A Christ Centered Easter Tradition for LDS Families. It looks like it could be a fun way to bring the focus back to the Savior. There are lots of suggestions for activities, songs and even a Passover meal. The blogger also suggested the following book:
Happy Easter 1960
This is how I remember Easter Sunday when I was very young.
I wanted a purse, gloves and hat to wear to Sunday School.
Chicks are a symbol of Easter.
Easter symbols are so commonplace that we often don't even think about what they mean. Candy eggs, bunnies and baskets in bright colors are everywhere. I miss the soft colors of my childhood Easters. I loved chocolate eggs with icing squiggles and those beautifully decorated sugar eggs with scenes of bunnies or chicks inside. But I was terrified by the idea of a giant rabbit coming into my house! Our children may wonder what bunnies and eggs have to do with Easter and the Savior's resurrection. We can teach them what the symbols stand for. I found a Primary related blog that defined some of the most common symbols.
- Baby Chicks - New Life
- Bunny - New Life
- Candle - Jesus, "The Light of the World"
- Cross - Jesus' Victory Over Death
- Egg - Spring
- Egg - Jesus' tomb
- Flowers, Daffodils and Tulips - Spring and New Life
- Easter Hats and New Clothes - New Life or Rebirth
- Lamb - Jesus, "Lamb of God"
- Hatching - New Life or Rebirth
- Lilies - Purity of Jesus or New life.
- Palm Leaves - Jesus Arrival in Jerusalem
- Pretzels - Arms Folded in Prayer (German?)
Butterflies symbolize three stages of Christ's life.
Caterpillar...His life on Earth
Cocoon...Crucifixion and Burial
Have a Blessed Easter Sunday!