The cross and crossing continents
Updated: Apr 2
Holy Week, begun last Sunday (28th March) with Palm Sunday. We were fortunate to be able to worship in both our churches, for the first time this year.
It was not possible however to have a procession to the Communion table with palm branches in our hands, or to give out palm crosses to people as they arrived.
This was something which had been anticipated by African Palms Ltd, a company which has grown out of a project begun over 50 years ago by Fr Alan Talbot, an Anglican missionary in the diocese of Masasi, Tanzania. The making of palm crosses continues to provide a valuable source of additional income for people in the villages, without interfering with the daily task of growing their own food; importantly, the trees grow wild and do not need to be cut down for this work to be done.
(For more information: Home of handwoven palm crosses ~ African Palms)
This year the villagers also turned to making brightly coloured bags. Each one is unique for, like the palm crosses, the work is done by hand.
Any profits from the villagers’ craft are put towards projects related to improving health and education.
All this, because “the great body of pilgrims who had come to the festival, hearing that Jesus was on the way to Jerusalem, took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting, ‘Hosanna! Blessings on him who comes in the name of the Lord! God bless the king of Israel!’” (John, chapter 12, verses 12/13)