I have more to post about Palm Sunday later, but I wanted to get this up now.
Originally posted April 9, 2006
And as he went, they spread their clothes in the way. And when he was come nigh, even now at the descent of the mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works they had seen; Saying, Blessed be the King that cometh in the name of the Lord: peace in heaven and glory in the highest. And some of the Pharisees from among the multitude said unto him, Master, rebuke thy disciples. And he answered, and said unto them, I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out. ~Luke 19: 36-40
Palm Sunday is one of my favorite Sundays out of the entire year, and one that is sadly ignored by many members of the LDS Church. I started celebrating it 9 years ago [now 14 years] when I was in Jerusalem and celebrated all of Holy Week with the Orthodox Christians in Jerusalem. I prefer Orthodox Easter because it is usually less touristy and there are a lot more locals participating. (See here for more on the celebration of Palm Sunday in Jerusalem.)
We met at Bethphage on top of the Mount of Olives then walked down the Mount of Olives through Lion's Gate to the Church of St. Anne where we sang and shouted hosanna. A somewhat familiar experience since I had been at the dedication of the Mount Timpanogos Temple the year before.
I always remember that particular Sunday on Palm Sunday now, but I also like to have an official beginning to this Holy Week when the most important event in history took place. So much that was good and bad happened this week, and I like to commemorate the entire week instead of just Easter Sunday. It's nice to begin and end the week with happy events.
And don't forget Saturday, the day before Palm Sunday, when Mary annointed Jesus (John 12:1-9). Unless it was on Tuesday (Mark 14:3-9).
So many of the praise hymns like "Praise to the Lord, the Almighty" and "Come, O Thou King of Kings" are beautiful songs to sing today. "All Glory, Laud and Honor" is one of my favorites:
All glory, laud, and honor
To thee, Redeemer, King
To whom the lips of children
Made sweet hosannas ring
Thou art the King of Israel
Thou David's royal Son
Who in the Lord's name comest
The King and Blessed One
The company of angels
Are praising thee on high
And mortal men and all things
Created make reply
The people of the Hebrews
With palms before thee went
Our praise and love and anthems
Before thee we present
To thee, before thy passion
They sang their hymns of praise
To thee, now high exalted
Our melody we raise
Thou didst accept accept their praises
Accept the love we bring
Who in all good delightest
Thou good and gracious king.