April 5, 2017 – Excerpted from Put Out Into the Deep, Bishop DiMarzio’s column in The Tablet:
My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord,
Palm Sunday, in the liturgical year, is a day when we anticipate the joy of Easter by reenacting the triumphal entrance of Jesus into Jerusalem several days before the beginning of His passion. The symbol of palm is a powerful one. The Gospels describe the people of Jerusalem spreading palm branches on the roads so that Jesus could enter in a regal manner.
The symbol of palm goes deeper into God’s revelation. In the beginning of the book of Genesis, we hear the story of Noah who saves his family from the great flood with the Ark. Towards the end of their ordeal, Noah sends out a dove who on the second time returns to the Ark with a palm or olive branch in his beak. This is the indication of dry land being somewhere within reach. It is a symbol of the peace to be created between God and humanity, thereafter to be symbolized by the rainbow, which is to recall that God would never again destroy the world by water. In the New Testament, the palm branch is portrayed in the Book of the Apocalypse as the symbol of the martyr’s glory and a sign of resurrection.
Read the full text of the Bishop’s column on The Tablet website.