Donkey Makes an Appearance on Pitshanger Lane

An appropriate guest in the St. Barnabas Palm Sunday procession

Donkey Makes an Appearance on Pitshanger Lane


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Those up and about in Pitshanger Lane last Sunday morning (14 April) were somewhat surprised to see a donkey in a procession with the Vicar of St. Barnabas, the serving team, choir, band and congregation. The event commemorated the triumphal arrival of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem on a donkey, days before he was crucified. The use of a donkey instead of a horse is highly symbolic as it represents the humble arrival of someone in peace, as opposed to arriving on a steed in war.

The day is known as Palm Sunday because palm branches were thrown in front of him as a sign of great respect and marks the start of Holy Week with Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday, followed by Easter Sunday.

Maundy Thursday commemorates the last supper with the twelve disciples at which Jesus washes their feet to show them that they should love one another in humble ways and establishes the institution of holy communion.

Good Friday is the day that Jesus was crucified which is the reason that the cross is so important for Christians today. Churches are stripped to mark the night before Jesus was betrayed.

Holy Saturday is the last day of Holy Week and is the day before the celebration of the resurrection of Jesus. The Easter Liturgy that commences in the evening is one of the most powerful acts of worship in the Christian calendar. It starts with the lighting of the new fire, followed by the marking of the Easter candle with a cross and the singing of an ancient hymn. At a poignant moment the lights are switched on, the bells are rung and the churches are filled with flowers.

Easter Sunday is a happy day as it is the day that the resurrection of Jesus is celebrated with a new life and hope. Eggs have long been linked to Easter and were associated with new life when the chick breaks open through the shell; the custom of giving children chocolate eggs has been popular in Britain for over two hundred years.

Full details of Easter services at St. Barnabas are to be found in the EalingToday Events Calendar.

Peter Rayworth

April 17, 2019

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