At church, on Palm Sunday morning, we celebrate the triumphant entrance of our Lord into Jerusalem. It is customary for the priest to distribute to the faithful crosses made out of palm branches, commemorating the victory of Christ against the evil powers.
In the evening, the Orthros (Matins) service usually takes place in anticipation of the following day. So the themes mentioned on Palm Sunday evening are actually the ones relevant to Holy Monday. One of these themes is the withering of the fig tree, a miracle symbolic of those who claim religious identity, but who in reality have empty lives that yield no spiritual fruit.
We created two projects, one for the morning, and one for the evening of Palm Sunday.
PALM SUNDAY MORNING – THE TRIUMPHANT ENTRANCE INTO JERUSALEM
The child can use this craft to act out the joyous welcoming of Christ into Jerusalem. Wave it while exclaiming: “Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!” – or you can try chanting the troparion of the day.
You will need:
- The palm leaf templates provided in our Holy Week crafting printable packet
- A sheet of green card stock or sturdy printer paper (plain printer paper is too flimsy for this project), dimensions about 8.5″ x 11″; additional pieces of thinner paper, white or in different shades of green
- A jumbo craft stick or drinking straw
- Colorful ribbons (optional)
- Scissors and Scotch tape
For this project the templates are not necessary – you can draw the palm leaves freehand if you wish. If you prefer the templates, you can either print, cut, and use them themselves – coloring them or not – or you can use them as guides for tracing around the shapes on different pieces of paper, that you will then cut – like we did with the large leaf in the photo.
Regardless of how you choose to work, you need to cut a large palm leaf shape out of the card stock or sturdy paper, and smaller palm leaf shapes out of the thinner sheets of paper.
Glue the smaller leaves onto the large leaf. Tape the craft stick or drinking straw on the back of the large leaf. If desired, tape ribbon pieces all around the leaf. If you want your waver to look pretty on both sides, you can glue another large green leaf shape on the back side, sandwitching the tape and ribbons between the two large leaf shapes.
PALM SUNDAY EVENING – THE WITHERING FIG TREE
Paper bag fig tree
You will need:
- The fig leaf template provided in our Holy Week crafting printable packet
- Colored paper or plain printer paper
- A paper lunch bag
- Tape (double-sided tape works best)
Using the template, cut out paper fig leaves. You have a few options:
- print the template on white paper and then color and cut the leaves
- print on colored paper (like we did in the photo)
- cut out the template, trace around it on separate pieces of paper, and then cut them out.
Cut the paper bag into 1/2-inch strips, starting from the top and going half-way down. Open the bag, stand it up, then twist it it at the middle to create the trunk. Twist a few strips together to make each branch.
Tape the leaves onto the branches.
Lesson Plans and Extra Resources
Don’t miss our extensive collection of Holy Week teaching material, both for digital and in-person learning.