Sunday, March 15, 2015

Palm Sunday B (March 29)

Bible readings: Isaiah 50:4-9a, Psalm 118:1-2, 19-29, Philippians 2:5-11,Mark 11:1-11 or John 12:12-16

About the Images:

Upper Left: This image comes from Hermanoleum Clipart ( and has my text added.
Upper Right:
This photo is mine and taken at Cable Beach, Broome, Western Australia. If you want to find out more about Broome visit . Please feel free to use for worship and related activities.
Lower Left: This is a free image from Imagebank - see my links column at left
Lower Right: This is a free image from Heartlight - see my links column at left

Skit/ Call to Worship: After the Cheering Has Stopped...
A group of people come into the church waving palm branches and coats, yelling and cheering a generally making a racket. As they reach the front of the church one of the group notices the cross, becomes subdued and very still, lays his or her branch or coat at the foot of the cross, and quietly sits down in the body of the congregation. One by one the others catch on and follow suit until there is just a pile of branches and coats at the foot of the cross. After a short silence, the worship leader says "...and after the cheering has stopped....what?" I cannot remember if I half-inched this idea from someone or somewhere else or whether it is my own. Let me know if if you know of another source for this idea and I will gladly make due acknowledgement.

Song: Chorus of Faith
By Michael Card on his album, Joy in the Journey, Birdwing Music, 1994 (pictured at left).

Listening Song: Talk About It
By Nicole C. Mullen on her album Talk About It (pictured at right) or on WOW 2003.

Film Clip: John 12:12-16
From The Gospel of John by The Visual Bible Society (pictured at left).

Film Clips: Jesus Christ Superstar
The musical film version of Jesus Christ Superstar (pictured at right) has two useful song clips for this week - because it is a musical, an audio effort could be made instead if you cannot show film clips. The two songs are Hossanna and Christ, You Know How I Love You.

Film Clip: Horton Hears a Who
(pictured at left) There are plenty of clips in this film about Horton going to extreme lengths to save the Who. At one point when he is warmed of the dire consequences of doing so, he reiterates that he is faithful. Very like Jesus who knew that the his entry into Jerusalem was leading him ever closer to his death - but he remained faithful and ever determined to be our Saviour. Watch it here:

Discussion: Horton Hears a Who
1. Why won't Horton give up on the Who even when he is threatened?
2. How are Jesus and Horton similar?

Skit: The Extraordinary Event
Found in Mega Drama 3 by Verona Johnson (Ed.) Openbook, 2002, ISBN 0859109178 (v.3), page 60, (pictured at right) It is based on the Mark reading.

Story: The Visit
By Adrian Plass in The Final Boundary, Minstral, 1987, ISBN 1854240935, page 149ff. This brilliant modern day parable is too long for a service but the first section has a great scene which challenges us to think about how we would celebrate Jesus' arrival in our midst.

Prayer/Confession: Going Up to Jerusalem
Found in Eggs and Ashes by Ruth Burgess and Chris Polhill, Wild Goose Publications, 2004, ISBN 1901557871, page 127

Prayer: Headline Prayers
Project some news items. Pray together for those who make the headlines this week.

Response Activity: Palm Crosses
While gentle music plays, encourage everyone to make a palm cross. Have the instructions printed out on A5 sheets for everyone and make sure a few people can already confidently make them so that they can guide others who may have difficulties. Clear instructions are available from www.king At the conclusion of the activity encourage people to lay their cross at the foot of the cross as you pray about the implications of the Easter week.

Response Activity: If You Were In the Crowd
This idea is found in Worship Ideas For Group Ministry, Group Publishing, 1997, ISBN 076442002X, page 50 (pictured at right).
Based on the gospel readings.

To Take Home: Business cards or bookmarks
Print with the following readings to lead into Easter:
Today: The Parade: Mark 11:1-11
Monday:The Temple: Mark 11:12-19
Tuesday: The Conflict: Mark 11:20-13:27
Wednesday: The Preparation: Mark 14:1-10.
Thursday: The Farewell: Mark 14:12-31
Friday: The Death: Mark 14:32-15:47
Saturday: The Silence: Mark 16:1
Sunday: The Winner: Mark 16:2-20. 

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