A person holds a placard with a Bible quote reading 'I was thirsty and you gave me to drink'.

With many Holy Week gatherings muted in Jerusalem due to wartime lack of access and an ongoing humanitarian crisis, the Palm Sunday procession held deep meaning. 

Ecumenical accompaniers carried messages from the Saint Porphyrius and Latin Holy Family churches, which are currently sheltering 750 Christians who lost their homes due to the war. This year, Christians from the West Bank were not allowed entry into Jerusalem, and therefore there were fewer Palestinian Christians participating in the procession compared to previous years. Participants came from around the world—but not from the West Bank 

Showing solidarity with those not able to attend, people from across the world, including the ecumenical accompaniers, came to walk, holding flags, singing, and praying as they went.  They walked from Bethpage and entered Jerusalem, on the road taken by Jesus some 2,000 years ago. It was a joyful procession with people chanting religious hymns, waving their palm branches, and recounting and reliving Jesus’ march into Jerusalem. 

The WCC Easter message reflects that nothing can separate us from the love of Christ. ”In every situation of suffering and death today let us be reminded that the Risen Lord brings us life, hope, and love,” notes the message.

Learn more: Easter Initiative 2024

This material was produced as part of the 2024 Easter Initiative of the World Council of Churches - Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (WCC-EAPPI). As we witness violence and injustice in the Holy Land and the struggle of its peoples to find peace, the 2024 WCC-EAPPI Easter initiative lifts up the call to roll away the heavy stone of violence, war and occupation, pain and suffering, and to remind the world of what is needed to bring about peace, to transform swords into ploughshares.