April 18th, 2011
By Caroline Borden, master of arts in conflict transformation student
I love that people used something from nature to welcome Jesus into Jerusalem. Today, depending on the part of the world, they use olive branches, marigolds or pussy willows in remembrance of this day.
When I was young I liked Palm Sunday for the simple reason that they gave us palm leaves in church. Now I care more about the significance of this day. But I still appreciate that by passing out palm leaves, we are bringing some of nature into the sacred space of the church.
I think, in turn, we can bring some of the sacred to nature, by noticing with reverence all that is around us in this lovely valley – today I saw a field of robins (I didn’t even know they traveled in flocks) and a hawk in my driveway (who doesn’t let me get too close). “But ask the animals, and they will teach you, or the birds of the air, and they will tell you”
By noticing nature, and actively giving praise for it, we are welcoming God into our lives in a sacramental way – a celebratory way, just as the people of Jerusalem welcomed Jesus.
Question for reflection: How has nature helped you to celebrate God?