Small Children and Palm Fronds Don’t Mix

March 29, 2010

Yesterday, Eric and I joined my mom at church for Palm Sunday. For those of you unfamiliar with the Christian calendar, Palm Sunday is the Sunday before Easter, commemorating Jesus’s triumphant ride into Jerusalem to a palm-waving crowd of adoring fans. It’s an upbeat day – things don’t really go south for Jesus until the latter portion of the week (betrayal, crucifixion, burial behind a big rock from which he miraculously emerges on Easter Sunday).

At many churches, the palms are pre-folded into wallet-size crosses – while convenient, these origami versions lack the drama and festivity of the unadulterated originals, which are generally somewhere around two-plus feet long and which were passed out yesterday to everyone in church – including all the children.

Seeing approximately 30 small children turned loose with their palm fronds was a hoot. They waved them around as they processed in, inadvertently whacking several members of the choir in the face as they walked by. During children’s time with the minister, one young congregant slyly and repeatedly poked the minister in the shoulder with the pointy end of his. Another little boy secured his around his forehead, Rambo-style, and threaded another one in perpendicularly so that it ran down his nose. The little girls seemed partial to braiding their palms and/or using them as horsey reins.

It’s a good thing that there are no Christian holidays involving large, splintery sticks.


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