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Worshippers celebrate Palm Sunday across New York City

NEW YORK — Palm, or palms, in hand, Catholics across New York City celebrated the opening of Holy Week on Sunday.

“It is one of those things that, even in the midst of suffering, even in the midst of difficulty, we believe that Jesus journeys with us in this life, and Palm Sunday helps us to remember that he is, in fact, one of us,” said Father Sean Hagerty, at Holy Trinity Church.

It’s believed that when Jesus arrived to Jerusalem, he was greeted with palms waved by the crowd.

Worshippers packed St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Midtown Sunday morning. The church has a packed schedule each day this week leading up to Easter next Sunday.

“Palm Sunday is a day of paradox,” said Timothy Cardinal Dolan.

Dolan says this because the celebration leads to what’s known as the week of Jesus’ passion, Holy Week, which ends in his death on the cross. Then on the third day, Easter Sunday, his resurrection is celebrated.

“What this whole week reminds us is that death or suffering is never the end, right, that God’s mercy and God’s love is perpetually there. So that even in the midst of suffering or difficulty, there is cause for joy and celebration, even if it seems far away,” Hagerty said.

RELATED STORY: Pope Francis, day after being discharged from hospital, presides over Palm Sunday mass

Parishioners, like Matteo Moren, also celebrated at Holy Trinity Church on the Upper West Side.

“It’s a great community. I think everybody who’s looking for community can find it here, and this is a place where Catholics can find a little bit of respite from what’s going on in the day-to-day,” he said.

The togetherness instilled throughout Holy Week is especially important for some, given recent tragedies across the country and the world.

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