Palm Sunday celebrated across Nagaland

DIMAPUR/KOHIMA | Publish Date: 4/14/2019 12:24:05 PM IST

Christians in Nagaland celebrated Palm Sunday, the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem, by organizing special services. Catholic Churches across the state celebrated Palm Sunday that initiates the Christians into the Holy Week by holding Holy processions and organizing special ceremonies to mark the day.

BMEC: The Bethesda Ministries and Education Centre (BMEC), Dimapur organized a Palm Sunday procession in which more than a thousand students of Bethesda Higher Secondary School (BHSS) participated.

A press release from BHSS administrator Esther Murry stated that the children along with their teachers waved palm leaves, carried placards, and toured the streets of Dimapur singing and praising the Lord.

The procession started from Burma camp -- Golaghat Road Police Point -- Deluxe Point -- Bata Charali -- over the flyover and back to Walford via Supermarket.

Palm Sunday processions are organized by Bethesda Ministries every year.

A large number of people came out of their houses to witness the procession boosting the children’s enthusiasm. The main attraction of the procession was the junior band with colourful costumes that played drums throughout the celebration.

The procession was initiated with an invocation by pastor Waiposong.

The program concluded with a prayer by BHSS administrator Esther Murry who led the procession along with the BHSS principal and its teachers.

MGOS Church: MGOS Church, Midland, Dimapur, celebrated Palm Sunday along with other Christians by organizing a special Palm Sunday service, Holy Communion, and taking out a procession. 

A press release from the Church stated that Vicar Rev. Fr. Dr. P.S. Varghese, who led the service, stated that in the city of Jerusalem people gave a royal reception to Jesus shouting “Hosanna” which means “Save us now”. 

The Church has also informed members that prayers will be offered every day at 5:45 p.m. on account of the Passion Week. On Maundy Thursday, prayers will start at 5 a.m. followed by a Paschal service. On Good Friday Morning, prayers will begin at 9 a.m. till 3 p.m. and on Gospel Saturday Holy Communion will be observed at 9:30 a.m. Easter services will begin at 5 a.m., Sunday. 

Rev. Fr. Jojo Joseph will lead all Passion Week services for the Kohima Kerala Christian congregation.

St Xavier Catholic Church: Members of St Xavier Catholic Church Kidima took out a procession with palm leaves from Thokhwezu to the Church.

A press release by the Church stated that main celebrant, Parish Priest, Father Siby John, said that Palm Sunday was the day of rejoicing and the passion of the Lord. He also appealed to the faithful people to self-evangelize and transform their lives. 

Reading of the passion of the Lord, Holy Mass and enchanting of the hymn marked the daylong celebration of Palm Sunday.

St. Francis de Sales: A Palm Sunday procession with hundreds of Catholic faithful from all walks of life carrying palm leaves marched from Old MLA Hostel junction and proceeded to St. Francis de Sales (SFS) Parish, Kohima Town.

Palm Sunday Mass was also celebrated with Parish Priest Rev. Fr. Richard Fernandes as the main celebrant. The solemn event also marks the beginning of the “Holy Week.” 

Cathedral Church Kohima: Cathedral Church Kohima Celebrated Palm Sunday with hundreds of people gathering at PHQ junction, Kohima. The Celebration consisted of prayers with Bible readings. People shared the joy of proclaiming the glorious entry of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem by singing Hosanna and holding Palm leaves, stated a release by the Church. The Holy procession began from PHQ junction and ended at Cathedral Church.

CBCK: Chakhesang Baptist Church Kohima (CBCK) observed ‘Palm Sunday’ at its Church premises.

According to a press release issued by CBCK, Nagaland Baptist Church Council (NBCC) general secretary, Rev. Dr. Zelhou Keyho spoke on the topic “The Coming King.”

As we celebrate the last journey of Jesus to Jerusalem which the gospel writers call it the “Triumphal entry” on a donkey, there is the danger of making the journey impersonal, said Rev. Dr. Keyho.

There is the danger of becoming too fanciful in our celebration of events and forgetting the real meaning of the celebration, he said. 

“Today, palm branches have become the focus and we forget the branches cut from the trees and from the field. The focus is not on what they use but what they did to welcome Jesus” he said.

He added that Jesus must become personal in the lives of believers and He must live in them not only in their belief system but also in their actions. The service was led by Rev. Dr. Vetso Koza. 

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