Have you ever wondered why Passionfruit is called Passionfruit?  Is this little fruit some sort of aphrodisiac? The “Passion” in passionfruit refers to the passion (suffering) of Jesus Christ.

In the 15th and 16th centuries, Spanish missionaries went to South America and used the structure of the passionfruit flower, a local plant, to teach the Indians about the Cross of Jesus.

  • The 10 petals represent the ten faithful apostles (excluding Peter and Judas).
  • The tendrils represent the whips used in the whipping of Christ.
  • The 3 stigmas represent the 3 nails.
  • The 5 anthers, below the stigmas, the 5 wounds (four by the nails and one by the spear).
  • The blue and white colours of the flowers of many species represent Heaven and Purity.

These missionaries retold history through a local flower.  These clever Christians used a simple flower to retell the events of Easter – the betrayal, suffering, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Locals passed on the Gospel message through a flower!

As I reflect on this, it reminds me that, at Easter time, we are not celebrating the idea or concept of forgiveness but the event of forgiveness.  I am also reminded that I must meet people where they are at and use whatever is at my disposal to speak about Christ.

Finally, without sounding too corny, we are God’s passion flower, displaying Christ in our flesh while we are on this planet,

“… all the glory of man is like the flower of the grass. The grass withers, and its flower falls away, but the word of the Lord endures forever.” 1 Peter 1:24

Denis Oliver