16 April 2009

Another Neglected Rubric for Palm/Passion Sunday

I don't think I mentioned before rubric #2: The procession may begin from outside the church building, from the narthex, of from the back of the nave. (Altar Book, page 501) Hand in hand with the above rubric is this one (p. 502): If the procession begins outside the nave, the congregation gathers around the processional cross.

Worshipping as we do right next to a loud and busy highway does not lend itself practically to beginning outdoors, either for Vigil or for Palm Sunday. Don't ask me how I know this! But if you have a quieter setting AND the weather is cooperating, there is something absolutely wonderful about having the people gather outside for the initial liturgy on Palm Sunday and then entering the Church building singing "All glory, laud, and honor!" as they wave their palms in honor of the King.

5 comments:

Rev. Jim Roemke said...

We began outside for the Great Vigil and sunrise Matins. It was absolutely wonderful! Our liturgy rang as it bounced off the houses in the neighboring subdivision! I would love to do this next year for Palm Sunday too, so long as we are not in store for 6-8 inches of snow again! The people absolutely loved gathering at the foot of our life-size cross around the fire of the Vigil too. I have been told by several in attendance that we MUST have the Vigil again next year, to which I gladly agree!

William Weedon said...

I'm jealous. Of your fire and of the ability to gather outside (but not of your snow). I'm also jealous of the great Paschal feast that Pr. Cwirla's place puts on each year!!!

Anonymous said...

Even here at our Minnesota parish we begin our Palm Sunday liturgy outside in front of entrance to the church. Unfortunately, there isn't much waving of palm branches that occurs. Most just drag their branches in with them.

empesoumetha said...

Palm Sunday here in New Orleans began outdoors. However, the Roman Catholic church across the street had an even better procession than ours, about a mile long, complete with a New Orleans style brass band.

Larry A Peters said...

For nearly 30 years I have called the people of God to begin the Passion Sunday liturgy by gathering outside (with only a roaring downpour keeping us inside). We gather around the cross and candles (hard to keep them lit outside), begin the Palm Sunday liturgy, and, following the blessing of the palms, the children pass them out to the assembled congregation, then we go forth in dialog (Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord/Hosanna in the highest), until the Sanctuary when All Glory Laud and Honor ring out of the organ and we end it singing at our places... If it is a downpour, we start inside, in the fellowship hall, and walk around the building inside once or twice for the same effect...