Catholic tradition is rich with ritual celebration and elaborate rites full of pomp and props often flavoured by older faiths and beliefs.
Someday I will write about the feast of St. Blaise, patron saint of throats. But for now, we focus on a holiday many Roman Catholics consider more important even than Christmas.
It was an intermittently sunny day when we set out for the church - not the well known landmark in the background, but a newer and brighter one with an involved and active community.
We were directed to the open courtyard where the ceremony would take place. Palms lay piled on a table, waiting to be blessed.
The priest blessed the congregation too, pausing several times to sprinkle holy water over everyone. Then there was a short brisk procession into the church to begin the Mass.
Palms are renewed this time every year. It is a practice to plait the newly-blessed fronds into branches, braids or crosses.
Our amateur efforts now hung in our entrance corridor - over the fire extinguisher - to bless and protect our home.