Trustees of Gramercy Park - Neighborhood News #534
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Thursday, April 17, 2014

Palm Sunday Procession at Gramercy Park 
Park Trustees Rev. Tom Pike and Arlene Harrison welcome Calvary-St. George's Rev. Jacob Smith, Melina Smith, and Church Wardens Jonathan Hansen and Bill Goetz into Gramercy Park on Palm Sunday, joined by children Lucas Hansen, Sophia and Henry Smith (with his back turned). 
Photos by Stanley Oakes

Once again the Trustees of Gramercy Park welcomed Calvary-St. George's Church parishioners, led by the Reverend Jacob Smith, into Gramercy Park to gather for their annual Palm Sunday Procession around the Park and into the church.  Palm Sunday marks the beginning of Holy Week, which culminates on Easter Sunday, April 20th.  

Park Trustee, Calvary-St. George's Rector Emeritus Rev. Tom Pike and Park Trustee Arlene Harrison stood at the west gate entrance to the Park and welcomed the large crowd of parishioners and neighbors. 

Rev. Pike, who is also a Vice President of The Gramercy Park Block Association explained to the crowd, "Let me make it perfectly clear that I am speaking for the Trustees of Gramercy Park and that I am no longer directly involved with Calvary St. George's."  
"All of us on Gramercy Park are so pleased with how much the church is now flourishing under the leadership of Jacob Smith," said Pike. 

"We are also delighted with his wife Melina Smith, who is often in the Park with their children Sophia and Henry.  Melina is frequently sought out by so many of our young mothers in the community for her wise counsel," said Pike.
Pike then introduced Arlene Harrison, Founder and President of the GPBA and known as the "Mayor of Gramercy of Park."  "Arlene will explain some of the reasons the Gramercy Park community is so appreciative of our relationship with Calvary-St. George's," said Pike.

"We could have no better example of the extraordinary partnership between our Gramercy Park community and Calvary-St. Georges than when there is a major crisis," said Harrison.
"The first call we make is to the church office, and they've always come through for us in so many ways. For example, through the years the church has provided Anderson Hall as a depot for our neighbors to gather essential supplies for many of our major volunteer relief efforts. A few of those efforts include care packages for soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq, and critical supplies for local first responders at World Trade Center, the victims of Hurricane Katrina and most recently Hurricane Sandy," she added.

"Our community can't imagine what we'd do without our relationship with Calvary-St. George's, and we couldn't be more grateful to have such a caring person as Rev. Jacob Smith leading the church."
Rev. Smith then explained to the crowd the meaning of the holiday, and expressed deep appreciation for the close relationship between Calvary-St. George's and the GPBA  and "the partnership we enjoy in working together on so many important projects that benefit the community and the world."
This article has been edited from its original version.
Rev. Jacob Smith leads parishioners and neighbors in the opening event on Palm Sunday in Gramercy Park.

Church Music Director Kamel Boutros and musicians lead the singing of the hymns.

Procession around Gramercy Park

Members of the Calvary-St. George's choir