My tradition likes tradition. We even have a special article of religion to encourage the maintaining of tradition. However there need be nothing static, stodgy or imposed about this tradition! Indeed the article anticipates that traditions will be changed ‘according to the diversities of countries, times and people’s manners ….’ (Article 34 of the Anglican Church). Now I’d like to say a little bit about why I think tradition is good but if you have come to this page for a Palm Sunday Song, a good-fun-noisy-family-service-Palm-Sunday-Song, then I’ll put the song in here and say more about tradition below!
The One Fine Day Palm Sunday Song words by Michael Palmer
One fine day
Jesus came along
Riding on a donkey
And the people were a throng
They laid down their garments
And raised their voice in song
Glory in the highest – and bless’ be – the king
Group 1 – Help! Help! Help!
Group 2 – Save! Save! Save!
Group 3 – Praise! Praise! Praise!
- Sung to the tune of ‘Old Lady Leary’.
- Song works very well unaccompanied.
- Song is sung several times with the first part of the song growing increasingly soft and the group section becoming increasingly loud.
- The groups sing their section simultaneously.
More on Tradition ……Tradition helps us to see ourselves as part of a community, ‘one thing among the many’ (Czeslaw, Love). They are mostly shared broadly and so allow conversation within and between communities. Traditions also help to fix stories, events and theology into our lives. They can be very powerful in helping us to remember or in allowing us to connect with precious memories.
This was made very clear to me, a few years ago, when we began communion services to our local nursing homes. Music was played and in karaoke fashion the visitors sang to the residents and encouraged them to sing along. This brought many smiles. As traditional Hymns were sung the residents awakened to tunes and words long fixed in their minds. Within the communion service, responses like ‘Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of host, heaven and earth are full of your glory. Glory to you, O Lord most high.’ became another point of participation. As I reflect on the generations post 60’s, where shared traditions seem often a very thin line, I wonder what words or songs will be used to awaken us when Alzheimer’s, dementia or simply old age weaken our capacity in short term memory?
Our church values tradition as a guide to creatively shape the present. We delight to place ourselves within the traditions of the church and so encourage such events as palm processions on Palm Sunday. We hope that through visual participation in the repeated cycle of the Church Year that the great stories surrounding the life of Jesus will find a firm place in the minds and affections of our members. A firm place as we seek to witness, in our community, to the love of God in Christ.