Thousands of Christians in Jordan headed to their Churches on Sunday morning, April 17, to celebrate Palm Sunday, and to commemorate the entry of Lord Jesus Christ into the city of Jerusalem, one week before the celebration of the Feast of the Resurrection (Easter) and the end of Lent.
The believers raised olive and palm branches. Festive processions were held outside churches in an atmosphere of joy and jubilation, concomitant with the restoration of the status quo ante of religious ceremonies after about two years of lockdowns and limitation of number of people in places of worship due to the circumstance relevant to the prevailing pandemic.
Named Auxiliary Bishop of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem Jamal Khader presided at the Palm Sunday Holy Mass in Al-Misdar, downtown Amman. In his homily, he said, “We begin the Holy Week by celebrating Palm Sunday, in which we enter with Lord Jesus Christ the city of Jerusalem, and accompany Him in His salvation journey for the sake of humanity, join Him on Thursday at the Last Supper, and walk with Him bearing our sufferings on Good Friday.“
He added, “Let us proceed these days on a holy path in which we sanctify ourselves by prayer, reconciliation, and fasting during these blessed days, while pleading with the Almighty Lord to have mercy on us, to grant us His grace, and to grant grace to our Church and our country Jordan, under the leadership of His Majesty King Abdullah II. He also lifted up a prayer imploring God to grant us the grace of solidarity with the sufferers and the oppressed, wishing a blessed holy week while observing the health instructions so that we can celebrate with confidence.
On the other hand, Fr. Dr. Rif’at Bader, director of the Catholic Center for Studies and Media and parish priest of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Church in Tla’ al-Ali, celebrated Holy Mass in the presence of a delegation of French pilgrims. He said, “These atmospheres that we live during the feasts are normal at a time when they stopped during the past two years due to the Corona pandemic. Yet, this year we thank the Lord for the blessing of recovery. We also pray for peace, especially at a time when there are peoples who still lack and thirst for this peace, especially in beloved Jerusalem. We also lift up prayers with people of good will in prayer in order to stop the war between Russia and Ukraine.
Father Bader conveyed well wishes to the Christian Catholic Churches that follow the Gregorian calendar and celebrate the noble Feast of the Resurrection on the morning of April 17. He added, “We lift up prayers this morning in general for our beloved homeland, Jordan, under the leadership of His Majesty King Abdullah II, and Crown Prince His Royal Highness Crown Prince Al Hussein Ibn Abdullah II, imploring the Lord for a safe return to His Majesty the King after he underwent a successful journey of recovery, so that he may return to his Hashemite family and to his extended Jordanian family, whereby we can continue with him the procession of growth, development and stability.
By Munir Bayouk/ en.abouna.org