Palm Sunday and Holy Week Services

Overview

Part of the"Justin Time" series, this book features ready-to-use lectionary-based worship and preaching resources for Palm Sunday and Holy Week. This helpfulresource includes three options for Palm Sunday services including procession suggestions with special emphasis on participation by children. It also includes two suggested services for each lectionary year (A, B, and C), six services for Holy Thursday and three services for Good Friday.

Palm Sunday and Holy Week Services ...

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Overview

Part of the"Justin Time" series, this book features ready-to-use lectionary-based worship and preaching resources for Palm Sunday and Holy Week. This helpfulresource includes three options for Palm Sunday services including procession suggestions with special emphasis on participation by children. It also includes two suggested services for each lectionary year (A, B, and C), six services for Holy Thursday and three services for Good Friday.

Palm Sunday and Holy Week Services Includes ready-to-use Palm Sunday and Holy Week services for worship with multiple worship options for each lectionary year scripture and gives suggested liturgies for each services including those related to Taize.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780687497782
  • Publisher: Abingdon Press
  • Publication date: 9/28/2006
  • Series: Just in Time! Series
  • Edition description: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 84
  • Sales rank: 749,958
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.30 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Robin Knowles Wallace is Professor of Worship and Music in the Taylor Chair at Methodist Theological School in Ohio. She is the author of Communion Services and Things They Never Tell You Before You Say “Yes”: The Nonmusical Tasks of the Church Musician, also published by Abingdon Press.
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Read an Excerpt

Just in Time!

Palm Sunday And Holy Week Services


By Robin Knowles Wallace

Abingdon Press

Copyright © 2006 Abingdon Press
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-0-687-49778-2



CHAPTER 1

Palm/Passion Sunday


This Sunday celebrates the triumphal entry of Jesus into the city of Jerusalem, when people waved palm branches and hailed him as a leader come from God. Yet it also commemorates Jesus' passion that occurred later in the week— betrayal and trials, condemnation and crucifixion. This Sunday holds in tension triumph and desolation, glory and rejection. Visuals include palm branches, banners, cloaks, a jar symbolizing the oil of anointing, the cross, purple paraments.


"PALM" SECTION OF SERVICE


1. Suggestion for Procession, Using the Gospel of Matthew (Lectionary Year A: 2008, 2011, 2014, 2017)

Processions have been an important part of religion throughout the ages. In the Hebrew Bible Abraham followed God's command to move, and Moses led the Israelites to the Promised Land. People followed Jesus around Galilee and into Jerusalem. Pilgrimages were an important part of Christianity in the early years and Middle Ages. Today, processions begin many of our worship services, demonstrating our willingness to follow God's call in our lives.

The celebration of Palm Sunday can be one of the most important processions of the church year. This is the culmination of Jesus' followers' celebration of his many healings and feedings, his teachings and care for them. From following Jesus around the small towns and villages of Galilee, people are now willing to follow him into the capital city of Jerusalem, ready to make him king and claim him as Messiah, God's anointed one.

Your Palm Sunday procession may take place within the sanctuary, beginning in the narthex and continuing in and around the sanctuary space. Another way is to gather up persons from Sunday school classes or fellowship time and process into the sanctuary together. Some congregations who are trying to connect with their neighborhood might take the procession out of the church building and into the neighborhood, and then come back to the sanctuary.

For a more formal procession on Palm Sunday, a cross would go first, followed by acolytes, clergy, and people. A less formal procession might begin with something representing the colt or donkey ridden by Jesus. Singing or chanting might be taught to a small group beforehand. At most, have a single half-sheet with words for persons who will participate; anything more is too much for moving and waving palm branches. Have palm branches ready to pass out to persons on the way. Children and youth (or avid sports fans) can be good persons to lead the procession enthusiastically.


Order of Service

Call to Worship (based on Psalm 118: 19, 29)

The procession may begin with a call to worship, by the person leading the procession, such as this: Methodist Hymnal

Open to us the gates of righteousness,

That we may enter through them and give thanks to the Lord.

O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; God's steadfast love endures forever!


Hymn Suggestions

As the procession gathers, you may sing a hymn for Palm Sunday, such as the following, or another song of praise.

• "All glory, laud and honor" by Theodulph of Orleans, translated John Mason Neale (Congregation on refrain, choir on verse) Methodist Hymnal

• "Blessing and praise/Benedictus qui venit" from Taizé

• "Blessed is he who comes in God's name" by John Thornburg

• "Blessed is the one" by Dan Damon (refrain is the Benedictus used in the Communion service) Methodist Hymnal

• "Filled with excitement/Mantos y palmas" by Rubén Ruiz Avila, translated Gertrude C. Suppe (Teach congregation the "Hosanna to the King" section and have choir or children sing the rest) Methodist Hymnal

• "Crown as your king the king who came crownless" by Thomas H. Troeger

• "He is exalted" by Twila Paris

• "Hosanna, loud hosanna" by Jeanette Threlfall

• "Hosanna! Hosanna!" by Cathy Townley

• "Jesu, Jesu, Hallelujah!" by Thomas H. Troeger

• "King of kings" by Sophie Conty and Naomi Batya

• "Pave the way" by Bret Hesla

• "Tell me the stories of Jesus" by William H. Parker (stanza 3 "Into the city, I'd follow") Methodist Hymnal

• "The rocks would shout if we kept still" by Thomas H. Troeger


Chanting

Chanting is also appropriate and sometimes easier than singing when on the move without instruments.

• Use words of Scripture, such as these from Matthew 21:9, arranged responsively:

Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!

Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!

Hosanna in the highest heaven!

• Or let the youth of the church write a brief rap that can involve the congregation with simple phrases of praise.

• Or use the first stanza/refrain of "The rocks would shout if we kept still" by Thomas H. Troeger


Entering the Sanctuary

As the procession grows, those at the front will not always be in sync singing or chanting with those in the back. That is the joy of processions, a multitude of persons, praising God, together in movement and aim, but all going at their own pace! Methodist Hymnal

When you enter the sanctuary, persons may take their places and either sing a hymn from the list above (if you have chanted) or if you have sung, then: Methodist Hymnal

Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!

Hosanna to the Son of David!

Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!

Hosanna in the highest heaven!


Scripture Reading: Matthew 21:1- 11


Prayer

Thank you, our God, for calling us to follow you, just as Jesus called the disciples long ago.

Thank you for your many blessings to us.

Keep us close to you in this week that begins in triumph but contains the horrible death of Jesus whom we love.

Help us hold blessing and passion together in tension in worship and in our lives.

Through your Holy Spirit we pray. Amen.


Hymn of Transition to Passion Section of Service: "O Christ, what can it mean for us" by Delores Dufner


2. Philippians Scripture as the Intersection of Palm and Passion Sections, Leads in to Mark Service (Lectionary Year B: 2009, 2012, 2015, 2018)


Order of Service


Call to Worship: Psalm 118:1- 2

O give thanks to the Lord, for God is good; God's steadfast love endures forever!

Let all creation say, "God's steadfast love endures forever."


Hymn: "All praise to thee, for thou, O King divine" by F. Bland Tucker

Scripture Reading: Philippians 2:5- 11

Scripture Reflection


Think of yourselves the way Christ Jesus
thought of himself.

You have been made in the image of God.

Yet, follow the example of Jesus—
look, he didn't boast about how great he was
or tell a big success story about himself.

Instead, he accepted the limitations of a human body,
not like a superstar,
but like a lowly migrant, traveling the countryside,
helping whomever he ran into.

This is what got him into trouble,
upsetting the status quo.

This is what led him to the cross.

Instead of getting cheered into Jerusalem day after day,
Jesus suffered a degrading trial and physical pain,
an embarrassing procession carrying a cross
through the city and a violent death.

On Easter and everyday since,
God has had the final word,
taking the death of Jesus and turning it
into a passage for all of humanity
into God's love and forgiveness.

For Jesus' willingness to be emptied out in life
and in death,
God filled everything he did.

Think of yourselves this way—
empty yourself of all that is less than God,
that God may live in you and use your life,
filling you with glory reflected from Christ Jesus.


Silence

Prayer

Gracious God, give us the mind that was in Christ Jesus,
willing to empty ourselves so that you may have
room to dwell in us.

Draw us closer this week into the mind of Jesus,
that we may understand more deeply his life
and death and love for us.

Through the Holy Spirit we pray. Amen.


Hymn Suggestions

• "Christ Jesus the lowly" by Ruth C. Duck

• "Crown as your king the king who came crownless" by Thomas H. Troeger

• "Eternal Christ, you rule" by Dan Damon

• "Jesu, Jesu, Hallelujah!" by Thomas H. Troeger

• "Jesus, name above all names" by Naida Hearn

• "Morning glory, starlit sky" by W. H. Vanstone this while I am alive, what will they do next?"

• "O Christ, what can it mean for us" by Delores Dufner (connects Palm and Passion) Methodist Hymnal

• "O lowly Lamb of God most high" by Delores Dufner


3. Youth or Children's Drama, Using the Gospel of Luke (Lectionary Year C: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016)


Order of Service


Call to Worship (based on Psalm 118: 24, 26)


This is the day that the Lord has made;

Let us rejoice and be glad in it.

Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord.

We bless you from the house of the Lord.


Drama (based on Luke 19:28b- 40)

Characters: Narrator, Jesus, 2–12 Disciples, 1–3 Colt Owners, Crowd, 2 or more Pharisees Methodist Hymnal

Props: colt (or played by person), reins, many cloaks, palm branches, placards reading "Bethpage," "Bethany," and "This Way to Jerusalem." Use costumes if desired or set in modern time.

Set Up:Designate midpoint in sanctuary as the villages of Bethpage and Bethany; colt and its owners are there at beginning of drama and owners may join the crowds after their lines. Narrator is at lectern. Jesus and disciples are at back entrance to sanctuary. Crowds are along the main aisle of sanctuary, from midpoint to front; if enough persons are involved, they may also line the side aisles for a longer procession; these persons may be sitting along the aisle, ready to join in. Practice the procession so Pharisees know where to be—near Jesus when it's time for their lines. If they need to catch up with Jesus, that's fine. Words to be spoken by congregation should be printed in bulletin. Brief prelude to drama might be "Tell me the stories of Jesus" by William H. Parker (stanza 3: "Into the city, I'd follow ...").

(As the drama begins, Jesus leads the disciples in from back of sanctuary, stopping one-quarter of way into sanctuary as the narrator ends the first speech.) Methodist Hymnal

Narrator: Jesus went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem. They came to the Mount of Olives.

Jesus: Go into the village ahead of you. There you will find a colt that has never been ridden. Untie it and bring it to me. If anyone asks, "Why are you untying it?" just say, "The Lord needs it."

(Two or three disciples go to village and begin to untie colt.) Methodist Hymnal

Colt Owners: Why are you untying our colt?

Disciples: The Lord needs it.

(Owners shrug to indicate acceptance. Disciples take the colt to Jesus, throw several cloaks on it, and set Jesus on it.) Methodist Hymnal

Narrator: As Jesus rode along, people kept spreading their cloaks on the road. (Crowd quietly places cloaks on path.) As he began going down from the Mount of Olives, the disciples and the followers of Jesus began to praise God joyfully, with loud voices for all the amazing things that they had seen, saying ...

Few Disciples: Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!

Some Crowd: Peace in heaven, and glory in the highest heaven! (Each repetition gets louder and procession continues, to front and then around the sanctuary.) Methodist Hymnal


All Disciples: Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!

All Crowd: Peace in heaven, and glory in the highest heaven! Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!

All Disciples: (Invite congregation to join in) Peace in heaven, and glory in the highest heaven!

All Disciples: Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!

Everyone: Peace in heaven and glory in the highest heaven!


(Procession stops when Pharisees begin speaking. Disciples keep chant going, but quieter, almost a mutter, through Pharisees' and Jesus' lines.) Methodist Hymnal


Pharisees: (Shouting) Wait! Silence! Teacher, order your disciples to stop.

Jesus: I tell you, if these people were silent, the stones would shout out.

Few Disciples: (Louder) Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!

(Procession begins again, traveling so that Jesus is at front of sanctuary by the end of the drama. Crowds and disciples begin waving palm branches. Each repetition gets louder.) Methodist Hymnal


Some Crowd: Peace in heaven, and glory in the highest heaven!

All Disciples: Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!

All Crowd: Peace in heaven, and glory in the highest heaven! Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!

All Disciples: (Invite congregation to join in) Peace in heaven, and glory in the highest heaven!

All Disciples: Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!

Everyone: Peace in heaven and glory in the highest heaven! Blessed is Jesus, who comes in the name of God! Blessed is Jesus, who comes in the name of God! Hosanna!


Hymn Suggestions

• "A cheering, chanting, dizzy crowd" by Thomas H. Troeger

• "All glory, laud and honor" by Theodulph of Orleans, translated John Mason Neale

• "Crown as your king the king who came crownless" by Thomas H. Troeger

• "Jesu, Jesu, Hallelujah!" by Thomas H. Troeger

• "O Christ, what can it mean for us" by Delores Dufner

• "The rocks would shout if we kept still" by Thomas H. Troeger


Responsive Prayer

Blessed is Jesus, who comes in the name of God.

We praise you, Christ Jesus,
for your amazing acts in our lives.

Yet, like your followers of old,
we turn all too quickly from praise to denial
of your place in our lives.

Stay with us, Lord Jesus, that we may
walk with you into your Passion, the
pouring out of your love for us.


We pray in your name, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, One God.

Amen.


Hymn of Transition to Passion Section of Service: "O Christ, what can it mean for us" by Delores Dufner

"Passion" Section of Service

1. Matthew'S Gospel (Lectionary Year A)

a. Service of the Passion, as Told in the Gospel of Matthew


Hymn Suggestions

• "I will take some time to pray" by John Thornburg

• "We sang our glad hosannas" by Mary Nelson Keithahn (stanzas 1—4) Methodist Hymnal

• "While the courts and priests conspire" by Thomas H. Troeger (hymn or litany, with its response "Not my will but yours be done.") Methodist Hymnal


Scripture Reading: Matthew 27:11- 26

Prayer

God in pain, Jesus on trial,

You watched and you suffered,
and so you know our pains and sufferings:

Open our hearts to understand
the depths of your love for humanity
that we may draw closer to you
and love you all the more.

We ask this through the power of the Holy Spirit
that binds us to yo u. Amen.

Hymn: "Were you there" (these three verses only):

Were you there when they crucified my Lord?

Were you there when they nailed him to the tree?

Were you there when the sun refused to shine?


(Continues...)

Excerpted from Just in Time! by Robin Knowles Wallace. Copyright © 2006 Abingdon Press. Excerpted by permission of Abingdon Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Table of Contents

Contents

Introduction,
Chapter One: Palm/Passion Sunday,
"Palm" Section of Service,
1. Suggestions for Procession, Using the Gospel of Matthew (Lectionary Year A: 2008, 2011, 2014, 2017),
Order of Service,
2. Philippians Scripture as the Intersection of Palm and Passion Sections, Leads in to Mark Service (Lectionary Year B: 2009, 2012, 2015, 2018),
Order of Service,
3. Youth or Children's Drama, Using the Gospel of Luke (Lectionary Year C: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016),
Order of Service,
"Passion" Section of Service,
1. Matthew's Gospel (Lectionary Year A),
a. Service of the Passion, as Told in the Gospel of Matthew,
b. Voices from the Passion Story, as Told in Matthew 26:14–27:66,
2. Mark's Gospel (Lectionary Year B),
a. Anointing of Jesus' Feet and Its Place in the Passion Story,
b. General Passion from Mark and Philippians, Includes Congregation in Scripture Reading,
3. Luke's Gospel (Lectionary Year C),
a. Last Supper and Disciples' Discussion about Who Is Greatest (Includes Children's Sermon),
b. General Passion from Luke with Two Dramas: "Daughters of Jerusalem" and "Father, Forgive Them",
Chapter Two: Holy Thursday,
Introduction,
1. Last Supper and Passover,
2. Footwashing, Based on John 13,
3. Communion and Anointing, Based on Mark 14:3-9 and 1 Corinthians 11:23-26,
4. Luke 22 and Communion,
5. Holy Thursday in the Style of Taizé,
6. Tenebrae Service,
Chapter Three: Good Friday,
Introduction,
1. Sorrow and Promise, Based on Psalm 22,
2. Service of Intercession, Based on Hebrews, and Incorporating the Stations of the Cross from John 18:1–19:42,
3. Good Friday in the Style of Taizé,
A Note on Holy Saturday,
Glossary,
Bibliography,
Hymnals,
Taizé Resources,
Single-Author Collections,
Scripture Index,

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