Farmer’s Market on Saturday – Worship on Palm Sunday

Market 1

Crowds at the Farmer’s Market © Ricky Yates

In early March, after a two-and-a-half month winter break, the Saturday morning Farmer’s Market at Vítezné námestí resumed. So now nearly every Saturday, we take a short bus or tram journey from the Chaplaincy Flat and explore what the market has to offer. As you can see, we are not the only ones who do so and at times, it can get quite crowded!

There are a number of stalls that we regularly visit each week for supplies of bread, eggs and potatoes. Whilst we can buy such things from our very convenient Kaufland supermarket, the produce from the Farmer’s Market does always seem fresher, is often cheaper, and one can be almost certain that the producer obtains a far better return for their labour.

Stall selling Moravian wine © Ricky Yates

Stall selling Moravian wine © Ricky Yates

Another of our favourite stalls is this one, selling Moravian wine. Whilst they do sell it by the 0.75l bottle, you can also have a plastic bottle filled from the tanks behind the counter. Two litres of extremely quaffable white wine costs around CZK 150 (just under £5.00 at current exchange rates).

The senior proprietor, (the gentleman behind the stall on the right in the photograph above), is Czech. However, he also speaks reasonably fluent German and has some English. So we frequently conduct business with him in a mixture of all three languages! When we are about to depart, his farewell words are almost always to wish us ‘Ein schönes Wochenende‘ 🙂

Flower stall at the Farmer's Market © Ricky Yates

Flower stall at the Farmer’s Market © Ricky Yates

Czech people do love their flowers and there are always numerous stalls that sell them. I couldn’t resist photographing this colourful stall yesterday which, as you can see, was doing a thriving business.

Accordion player/singer © Ricky Yates

Accordion player/singer © Ricky Yates

In the centre of the market area, there are various stalls selling freshly cooked food with tables & chairs where you can sit down and eat. And you can usually do so to musical accompaniment such as this young accordion player/singer was providing yesterday morning.

Our visit to the Farmer’s Market at Vítezné námestí yesterday morning, when all the accompanying photographs were taken, marked the beginning of a busy but enjoyable weekend. Today, not only did we have our Palm Sunday Eucharist, but the service was to be followed by that significant event – our Annual Church Meeting.

Just a few minutes before worship was due to begin at 11.00 this morning, we suddenly had a problem of the nicest sort. We completely ran out of copies of the Palm Sunday Order of Service as the congregation became double the size for a normal Sunday. The cause was a large number of visitors, mainly Americans but also including a delightful Indonesian couple. The biggest visitor group was a party of high school students from Connecticut, along with their teachers. We solved the problem by me asking from front, for people to share, so that everybody could follow and join in the liturgy. Fortunately, we just had enough palm crosses to go around!

After reading the Palm Sunday Gospel – Matthew 21. 1-11, I led the congregation in a procession outside, all around the Church as we sang ‘All glory, laud and honour, to thee Redeemer King’. Fortunately, when we re-entered the Church, we were still just about in time with Professor Michal Novenko on the organ 🙂 Some of those living the apartment blocks that overlook the Church got a bit of a surprise, but at least they were made aware that today was Palm Sunday!

As for the Annual Church Meeting, it was much better attended than in a number of previous years, and despite the serious financial difficulties that we face, there was a real desire expressed to work together to overcome them. Both our worship and the Annual Church Meeting have certainly helped prepare me to enter Holy Week, and with Jesus, once more walk the way of the cross.

9 comments to Farmer’s Market on Saturday – Worship on Palm Sunday

  • Sean Mccann

    Hi Ricky,
    Great post as always, I’m glad to hear that prices are reasonable in the markets in Prague, sadly their counterparts in Ireland are often very expensive and well above the prices in local shops or supermarkets. You certainly had a busy weekend and a great deal of work on Palm Sunday. I’m sad to hear of your financial difficulties and I hope your combined efforts and endeavours will be blessed with success. Wishing you and yours a Happy and Holy Easter.
    Slán agus Beannacht Dé oraibh go léir.

    • Ricky

      Hi Sean,
      Yes – most things for sale at the Farmer’s Market are very reasonably priced in comparison with local supermarkets & usually of as good, if not better, quality. A few things are overpriced but you can obviously choose not to purchase them.

      As a Church, we struggle to pay our way. It isn’t that the members of the congregation are not generous – it’s that most are not big earners & give generously, but out of relatively low incomes. Many thanks for your Easter greetings!

  • Sean Mccann

    Hi Ricky,

    I don’t doubt the generosity of your congregation at all and I wish you all well. After I had posted my comment I remembered an old Irish proverb (a seanfhocal in Irish) ‘Níl neart go cur le cheile’ – ‘there is no strength until we come together’ is the literal translation. It is probably best rendered as ‘No strength without unity’; I hope your congregations unity will provide all the strength needed to overcome the difficulties.
    God bless.

  • Congratulations on running out of Palm Sunday bulletins! Would the financial difficulties could be solved as easily!

    • Ricky

      It was Orders of Service that we ran out of, as well as the Weekly Bulletin, Stephen. This was due to the size of the congregation but also I suspect, from people walking off with copies twelve months ago, instead of returning them at the end of the service as we ask them to! I concur entirely with the sentiments contained in your second sentence 🙂

  • Though the market itself isn’t familiar to me, the glimpses of the square behind it brought back many memories, Ricky. 🙂 I love farmers’ markets and enjoy going to a couple near us in France, though we don’t have any within easy reach in Wales.

    How great to have such a crowd for Palm Sunday and I’m sure all your visitors enjoyed themselves at the service. Paying one’s way is a problem for almost all churches nowadays, so I’m glad your ACM was well-attended and such good intentions were expressed. I hope you are having a very blessed Holy Week.

    • Ricky

      I’m always pleased when my photos evoke good memories for you, Perpetua 🙂 And I’m sure you would enjoy our Farmer’s Market at Vítezné námestí.

      It was a wonderful congregation on Palm Sunday and yes – the visitors were most appreciative when I spoke with them at the door at the end of the service. Judging by the number of hits has had this week & the decent numbers we had for our Maundy Thursday Eucharist this evening, I think we might be heaving somewhat on Easter Day.

  • […] the most pleasurable surprise on Palm Sunday, of a congregation almost twice as large as on a normal Sunday, I was also pleased that the number […]