This week is the sixth Sunday in Lent which is known as Palm Sunday as it celebrates Jesus’ triumphal entry. Something noteworthy about the language here – in other seasons we would say, “The first Sunday of Advent,” but for Lent we say it is a Sunday in Lent. Sundays are in Lent, but not of Lent. That is because Sunday is always a feast day, even in the season of fasting. Sunday is always a celebration of the resurrection!
Liturgical Color – Purple or Red
This color is used during the season of Lent for multiple reasons. The first being that Jesus was clothed in a purple robe during his passion. Purple cloth, due to its expensive nature, was reserved typically for royalty who could afford it. The color is also associated with the bruising and bleeding that Christ experienced during his passion and crucifixion. The purple used during this season reminds us that Christ is King and his Kingdom is unlike any the world had seen before as it is one of service, compassion, and love for others. Red is also commonly used on Palm Sunday to represent the blood of Jesus that would be shed for humanity. It also is the color for martyrs. Jesus throughout Holy Week gave witness to just how much he loves humanity.
Call to Worship
One: Bless the Lord, who forgives all our sins. Many: His mercy endures forever. One: Behold your King! He comes riding on a donkey. Many: Hosanna in the highest! One: Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Many: Hosanna in the highest!
Almighty and everliving God, in your tender love for the human race you sent your Son our Savior Jesus Christ to take upon him our nature, and to suffer death upon the cross, giving us the example of his great humility: Mercifully grant that we may walk in the way of his suffering, and also share in his resurrection; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Liturgy of the Table
(From Lift Up Your Hearts: Year B, OSL Publications) One: The Lord be with you. Many: And also with you. One: Lift up your hearts. Many: We lift them up to the Lord One: Let us give thanks to the Lord our God. Many: It is right to give our thanks and praise.
One: It is right, and a good and joyful thing Always and everywhere to give thanks to you, Almighty God, Creator of heaven and earth. Your steadfast love endures forever. You have made this day and given it to us. You give us aid in times of trouble. Through you, we are loved deeply. And so, with your people on earth and all the company of heaven, we praise your name and join in their unending hymn:
Many: Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might, heaven and earth are full of your glory Hosanna in the highest. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest.
One: Holy are you, and blessed is your Son Jesus Christ.
who, though, he was in the form of God, did not count equality with you a thing to be grasped; but emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of humanity. And being found in human form, he humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even death on a cross.
Your Spirit anointed him to preach the good news to the poor, to proclaim release to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, and to announce that the time had come when you would save your people. He healed the sick, fed the hungry, and ate with sinners. By the baptism of his suffering, death, and resurrection, you gave birth to your church, delivered us from slavery of sin and death, and made with us a new covenant by water and the Spirit.
On the night in which he gave himself up for us he took bread, gave thanks, broke it, and gave it to his disciples. And he said “Take, eat; this is my body which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” When the supper was over he took the cup, gave thanks, gave it to his disciples, and said “Drink from this, all of you; this is my blood of the new covenant poured out for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins. Do this as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.” And so, in remembrance of these mighty acts in Jesus Christ, We offer ourselves in praise and thanksgiving as a holy and living sacrifice, in union with Christ’s offering for us, as we proclaim the mystery of faith.
Many: Christ has died; Christ is risen; Christ will come again.
**Placing hands over the elements to consecrate them**
One: Pour out your Holy Spirit on us gathered here, and on these gifts of bread and cup. Make them be for us the body and blood of Christ, that we may be for the world the body of Christ, redeemed by his blood, for we are called to be saints and bring the world to Christ. By your Spirit make us one with Christ, one with each other and one in ministry to all the world. until Christ comes in final victory and we feast at the heavenly banquet. Through your Son Jesus Christ with the Holy Spirit in your holy Church, all honor and glory is yours, almighty God, now and forever. Amen
And now with the confidence of children of God, let us pray: Many: Our Father, which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy Name; Thy kingdom come; Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven: Give us this day our daily bread; And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive them that trespass against us; And lead us not into temptation, But deliver us from evil; For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, For ever and ever. Amen.
One: Come, receive the elements.
**Taking the bread**
One: Because there is one loaf, we, who are many, are one body, for we all partake of the one loaf. The bread which we break is a sharing in the body of Christ. Receive, and eat.
**Taking the Cup**
The cup over which we give thanks is a sharing in the blood of Christ. Receive, and drink.[Prayer After All Receive] Eternal God, we give you thanks for this holy mystery in which you have given yourself to us. Give us courage to follow Jesus and always confess him with a steadfast heart. Grant that we may go into the world in the strength of your Spirit, to give ourselves for others. In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. ☩ Amen.
Benediction One: Go, follow Christ who comes not on a war horse, but a donkey. Go, follow our King who flips things upside down for the sake of others. Go, shouting Hosanna! In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit go in grace and peace to love and serve the Lord and neighbor. Many – Thanks be to God.