Today, the Catholic Church commemorates the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem and his passion. For this reason Palm Sunday is also known as Passion Sunday. It marks the liturgical start of Holy Week. The solemn liturgy at St George’s basilica starts at 10.30 this morning, local time. In commemoration of Christ’s entry into Jerusalem, the faithful gather on Independence Square where the branches of palms and olive are blessed.

The procession follows, from the main square, through St Joseph Street into St George’s Square as re-enactment of Christ’s processional entry into Jerusalem. The Christian Church represents the new Jerusalem where the actions of salvation now take place.

Concelebrated and solemn high Mass by the Chapter and clergy, presided by Mgr Joseph Curmi, archpriest of the basilica, follows during which the passion account according to Mark is proclaimed by three priests wearing red vestments. Red is the colour of martyrdom. Christ was the first martyr who testified to the new alliance of love that God established in his saving blood.

The liturgy at St George’s basilica is animated by the renowned Laudate Pueri Choir under the direction of Rev. George J. Frendo. The Schola Cantorum Gregoriana also participates.

Besides the three Masses celebrated yesterday evening, eleven more Masses are being celebrated today. The first one was at 5.00am and the last one will be the 7.00pm Mass.