What Is Palm Sunday Mass Like?


#1

Hello Everyone,

As far as I know palm sunday is tomorrow (at least where I am). My problem is that I have never attended a Palm Sunday mass therefore, I fear that I would be lost by attending it tomorrow.

As I probably mentioned before, I am prone to having serious panic attacks among any place that has large crowds (Church on Holy days of Obligation included) as the crowds at church on these days are much larger than normal. Sometimes just the thought of a large crowd at church is enough to make me stay at home due to fear, and anxiety. Due to the panic attacks that I am prone to, I usually avoid all holy days, and this is the reason why I have never been to a Palm Sunday Mass.

I would like to attend church tomorrow, if the crowd is not large I could probably stay, (otherwise I will end up running out of the church, and coming back home after a few minutes), BUT If I do end up staying for the entire mass, What should I do? What would it be like? I know they will be distributing palms, but Does the church give everyone palms? Do I have to bring my own palms? What am I supposed to do with them?

These are my questions. I would really appreciate some answers. Hopefully I would be able to stay. God alone knows if I would be running out of the church tomorrow, although I hope I won’t.

Please advise,
Thank you!


#2

I can tell you this much… You do not bring your own palms. The parish provides blessed palms for everyone. After Mass, it is a tradition to place your palms horizontally above the Crucifixes in you house. :slight_smile:

I have panic attacks as well. Prayers offered. :gopray2:


#3

[quote="Zekariya, post:2, topic:319859"]
I can tell you this much... You do not bring your own palms. The parish provides blessed palms for everyone. After Mass, it is a tradition to place your palms horizontally above the Crucifixes in you house. :)

I have panic attacks as well. Prayers offered. :gopray2:

[/quote]

Thank you! It is relieving to know that I will not need to carry anything.


#4

First off, I will pray for you. It sounds like you are suffering terribly under the weight of your affliction. Second, in addition to the Physician of Souls (Our Lord), I hope you will enlist the assistance of a physician of bodies. Panic attacks and anxiety can, in many cases, be controlled with therapy. (My apologies if you are already under the care of a physician.)

Palm Sunday Mass is a bit different from other Sunday Masses. What usually happens is, palms are laid out on a table in the entrance to the church; you needn't bring your own. At the beginning of Mass, the priest may stand in the doorway to the church (or the people may assemble elsewhere; outside or another building on the parish campus), read the Gospel about Jesus entering Jerusalem in triumph. Then he will bless the palms. A brief procession occurs, then Mass proceeds normally.

For the reading of the Passion, there are usually four groups. The priest speaks the words of Our Lord, a lector reads the narrative passages, another lector speaks the words that were said by singular people, and the rest of the people -- you and me -- speak the words uttered by the crowd. (It is humbling to hear yourself say "Crucify Him, crucify Him" liturgically on this day and realize that you do the same thing -- and mean it -- every time you commit sin.)

The reading of the Passion usually takes a great deal of time; as a result, Palm Sunday is one of the longest liturgies of the year. Only the Easter Vigil ordinarily takes more time.

After the reading of the Passion, Mass and Communion proceed as normal at Sunday Mass. At the end of Mass, you can take your blessed palm home with you. (Palms can be returned to the church before next year's Ash Wednesday, as they are used to make the ashes. Or you may keep them as a sacramental in your home, or dispose of it by burning it. Since the blessed palms are sacramentals, they should in no way be disposed of in the trash as common refuse.)

I hope this helps. Perhaps going to an evening Mass if one is available to you will cut down on the crowd. In any event, Palm Sunday Mass is about as well attended as a regular Sunday Mass . . . it's Easter Sunday Mass that attract the hordes of people.


#5

[quote="TradAvenger, post:4, topic:319859"]
First off, I will pray for you. It sounds like you are suffering terribly under the weight of your affliction. Second, in addition to the Physician of Souls (Our Lord), I hope you will enlist the assistance of a physician of bodies. Panic attacks and anxiety can, in many cases, be controlled with therapy. (My apologies if you are already under the care of a physician.)

Palm Sunday Mass is a bit different from other Sunday Masses. What usually happens is, palms are laid out on a table in the entrance to the church; you needn't bring your own. At the beginning of Mass, the priest may stand in the doorway to the church (or the people may assemble elsewhere; outside or another building on the parish campus), read the Gospel about Jesus entering Jerusalem in triumph. Then he will bless the palms. A brief procession occurs, then Mass proceeds normally.

For the reading of the Passion, there are usually four groups. The priest speaks the words of Our Lord, a lector reads the narrative passages, another lector speaks the words that were said by singular people, and the rest of the people -- you and me -- speak the words uttered by the crowd. (It is humbling to hear yourself say "Crucify Him, crucify Him" liturgically on this day and realize that you do the same thing -- and mean it -- every time you commit sin.)

The reading of the Passion usually takes a great deal of time; as a result, Palm Sunday is one of the longest liturgies of the year. Only the Easter Vigil ordinarily takes more time.

After the reading of the Passion, Mass and Communion proceed as normal at Sunday Mass. At the end of Mass, you can take your blessed palm home with you. (Palms can be returned to the church before next year's Ash Wednesday, as they are used to make the ashes. Or you may keep them as a sacramental in your home, or dispose of it by burning it. Since the blessed palms are sacramentals, they should in no way be disposed of in the trash as common refuse.)

I hope this helps. Perhaps going to an evening Mass if one is available to you will cut down on the crowd. In any event, Palm Sunday Mass is about as well attended as a regular Sunday Mass . . . it's Easter Sunday Mass that attract the hordes of people.

[/quote]

Thank you for all the information you provided. There will be a mass this evening at my parish, they will also be distributing palms. I will consider going this evening instead of tomorrow, hopefully there will be less people attending than tomorrow.


#6

[quote="mcw013, post:5, topic:319859"]
Thank you for all the information you provided. There will be a mass this evening at my parish, they will also be distributing palms. I will consider going this evening instead of tomorrow, hopefully there will be less people attending than tomorrow.

[/quote]

mcw, I would strongly advise you to go this evening instead of tomorrow, there may still be more people than usual at a vigil mass in your parish, but it will be less than tomorrow morning.

I do not suffer panic attacks, but I do get very, very uncomfortable in crowds of strangers and have found, in my parish, that the early Sunday evening mass is the 'best' to attend from the point of view of not being crowded.


#7

You will be standing for a LONG time. Wear comfortable shoes.


#8

I do not currently have a Crucifix in my home. What would I do with them?


#9

[quote="marcaevans, post:8, topic:319859"]
I do not currently have a Crucifix in my home. What would I do with them?

[/quote]

Put them on top of a Cross or Holy Images/Icons.

If you don't have any of these, put them in an empty vase or cup (without water). This is what I do with palms from previous years. :)


#10

I'm bipolar and the winter months are difficult. The last time I went to mass, it was Christmas. I simply couldn't deal with leaving the house.
I've now snapped out of it & am looking forward to going back for Palm Sunday and Easter (and beyond).
Of course I'll make a confession to get forgiveness for being a slackard.
At my church, the ushers hand out palm fronds & we then go outside for the "blessing of the palms." It's really nice because we're in Florida and the weather always seems perfect for this ritual.
Just remember that everybody is there for one reason. It's hard, but not impossible to make it.


#11

[quote="Reaganorama, post:10, topic:319859"]
I'm bipolar and the winter months are difficult. The last time I went to mass, it was Christmas. I simply couldn't deal with leaving the house.
I've now snapped out of it & am looking forward to going back for Palm Sunday and Easter (and beyond).
Of course I'll make a confession to get forgiveness for being a slackard.
At my church, the ushers hand out palm fronds & we then go outside for the "blessing of the palms." It's really nice because we're in Florida and the weather always seems perfect for this ritual.
Just remember that everybody is there for one reason. It's hard, but not impossible to make it.

[/quote]

Could you speak to your priest about your condition and get a dispensation from your Mass obligation when you are badly effected by your bipolar disorder? My mom has back problems and received a dispensation from our priest. :)


#12

I suggest going to the earliest Mass as usually those are less crowded. Our earliest is 7:30 AM.


#13

Thank you for the advise everyone, I went to the saturday evening mass (yesterday evening). There were alot of people there, although not a full church. I was really nervous, BUT I was able to make it through (BARELY). I do not think I would have made in during todays mass. Thanks again.


#14

[quote="mcw013, post:13, topic:319859"]
Thank you for the advise everyone, I went to the saturday evening mass (yesterday evening). There were alot of people there, although not a full church. I was really nervous, BUT I was able to make it through (BARELY). I do not think I would have made in during todays mass. Thanks again.

[/quote]

:thumbsup:


#15

[quote="mcw013, post:13, topic:319859"]
Thank you for the advise everyone, I went to the saturday evening mass (yesterday evening). There were alot of people there, although not a full church. I was really nervous, BUT I was able to make it through (BARELY). I do not think I would have made in during todays mass. Thanks again.

[/quote]

Great! Hopefully the memory of making it through this time will help you cope next time you find yourself at a mass that could trigger your panic attacks.

(I was thinking of you, praying for you, during the mass I went to, which was way more crowded than usual - and I ended up sitting and reading in my car for nearly 15 minutes afterwards until the traffic around the churches had calmed down a bit - I park well out of the church area just because the traffic gets really congested, but Palm Sunday it was heavier than usual on the approach roads too.)


#16

[quote="VivienneJ, post:15, topic:319859"]
Great! Hopefully the memory of making it through this time will help you cope next time you find yourself at a mass that could trigger your panic attacks.

(I was thinking of you, praying for you, during the mass I went to, which was way more crowded than usual - and I ended up sitting and reading in my car for nearly 15 minutes afterwards until the traffic around the churches had calmed down a bit - I park well out of the church area just because the traffic gets really congested, but Palm Sunday it was heavier than usual on the approach roads too.)

[/quote]

Thank you! I can understand why you parked that way, I witnessed a fair bit of traffic myself on Palm sunday.


#17

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