Palm Sunday — Aotearoa New Zealand

It seems early to be sharing liturgy for Palm Sunday, which is often also the occasion for Passion Sunday, and falls on March 24 this year, but these gifts are for those who are planning worship. Those who use this blog for personal reflection may want to hold on to these posts until later in the Lenten season.

Here are two poems by Elaine Bolitho of Aotearoa / New Zealand with her photograph of koru a fern from her garden between them. She suggested in sending the picture that perhaps it was too specific to the New Zealand landscape for others to appreciate, but this is exactly the beauty of the gifts we are able to offer one another. These two poems reflect the double-sided nature of Palm / Passion Sunday.

Palm Sunday

Fern fronds link us to You, our God
and to our land of the silver fern.

The koru unfurls Your gift of new life,
Creator, we see Your beauty in tree ferns and palms,
ferns high on tree trunks; and nestling near the earth.

People long ago waved palm fronds –
for a brief moment honouring You as King Jesus,
before casting aside the moment – and You.

Holy and multi-faceted Spirit
You breathe God’s restful green presence into our lives,
You enliven us, energise us, empower us.

Like the koru may we unfurl
to show You to the people of our land.

Koru -- Unfolding Fern Frond

Koru — Unfolding Fern Frond

Meditation on a Palm Cross

Christ of the cross,
incarnate, crucified creation.

Wrenched from cosmic consciousness,
crushed into created humanity,
causal spark of all life made vulnerable –

Your life force threatened –
wrenched from your roots –
contorted in agony –
distorted, twisted, torn –
Your life hanging by your hands.

‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
Why, in all creation, me?’

‘For such a time as this our Godness enfolds you my child –
I hang with you.
My love contorts with you.
Turn your trauma to me –
accept the strength of my love’s embrace.’

‘Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.’

My Christ of the cross,
incarnate, crucified for creation.

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