Crossing Palms - Crossing Continents

Posted by Les Ellison  ·  Be the first to comment

Come Palm Sunday, churches across the UK, Europe, Australia and America will distribute palm crosses hand woven by villagers in one of the poorest areas of Southern Tanzania. Subsistence farmers and their families of Masasi village work together to grow, harvest, weave and pack hand woven African palm crosses for worship in churches around the Christian world.

The income from African palm crosses is a vital to the villagers giving them the opportunity to improve on their subsistence life style and invest in the protection of their environment:

  • Children’s Eye Clinics: Masasi suffers a high incidence of Trachoma – causing eyelashes to turn inward leading slowly and painfully to complete blindness. Village children are checked and monitored for eye infections.
  • Improving Seed Stocks: The most disease resistant, fastest growing and most nutritious corn and peanut plants are selected and their seeds planted to improve the villagers’ ability to feed themselves.
  • HIV Awareness: Education not only helps prevent the disease but gives villagers the understanding to care for people living with AIDS without fear of infection.
  • Solar Ovens: Solar cooking protects against deforestation with a simple, cheap and effective way of cooking without the need to gather firewood or buy charcoal.
  • Water Resources: Villagers learn to build, operate and maintain water pumps, refurbish old wells and sink new water bore holes.
  • Livestock Management: Villagers learn techniques of zero impact grazing, animal shelter construction and the basics of caring for cattle and goats. 
  • Fishponds: Sustainable fish stocks provide extra protein and earns villagers a little income by selling fish to pay school fees and access better health care.

Through these programmes, funded in part by African palm crosses, the health and wellbeing of children & adults is a substantially improved. With the income and education from African palm crosses, villagers have the resources and knowledge to invest in their children’s future and in protecting their environment.

Quick Guide to

African Palm Crosses from - what are they?

  • Elegant, traditional Palm Sunday crosses hand woven by Masasi villagers from naturally grown, chemical free African palm leaves.
  • Grown, harvested woven and distributed as part of self-help programme in one of the poorest regions of Southern Tanzania.
  • An opportunity to connect with and support the future health and education of the Masasi village.

Over to You

At you can find a truly interactive Christian community helping you find all you need to live, learn and grow your faith. source all their Palm Sunday palm crosses through the charity African Palm Crosses.

  • How important to you is ethical sourcing of products and materials used in church?
  • Palm crosses are both a tradition and a visible witness. Have you had an experience around the distribution or display of palm crosses?

Tell us. Post your ideas, views and tips - bizarre and brilliant at


6th February

February 6th, 2012 - Posted & Written by Les Ellison

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