Lectionary Lent 6 (Palm Sunday or Passion Sunday) Year A

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Isaiah 50:4-9a It is the Lord who helps me
Psalm 31:9-16 Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am in distress
or 118:1-2,19-29 Open to me the gates of righteousness
Philippians 2:5-11 he emptied himself, taking the form of a servant
Matthew 26:14-27,66 Judas betrays Jesus
or 27:11-45 Jesus before Pilate
or Mathew 21:1-11 The entry to Jerusalem

Possible Hymns
(Numbers refer to The Australian Hymn Book and Sing Alleluia.)
SA 89 Hosana! Hosana! We cry 'Hosana Lord'
SA 93 When Christ was lifted from the earth
SA 8 As Jesus came to Jerusalem
SA 94 When his time was over the palms lay where they fell
79 Praise to the holiest in the height
162 Come children join to sing
170 At the name of Jesus
180 All praise to thee, for thou, O king divine
188 Hail Redeemer, King divine!
250 All glory, praise and honour
251 The royal banners foward go
252 Alone you once went forth, O Lord
255 O sacred head sore wounded
258 When I survey the wondrous cross
261 Were you there when they crucified my Lord
262 We sing the praise of him who died
264 Ride on, ride on in majesty
265 In the cross of Christ I glory
266 There is a green hill far away
271 Lift high the cross
274 Man more than man
286 Ye gates, lift up your heads on high [Ps 24]
522 O master let me walk with you
576 Now to him who loved us

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Enthusiasm and loyalty

We all know when we celebrate the joyful welcome of Palm Sunday that it leads to the sadness and terror of Good Friday. Beneath our recollection of the enthusiasm with which Jesus was welcomed as king to the capital city, there is always our additional memory of the humiliating death of the servant of God. We know when we look at ourselves that we can hardly blame the people of Jerusalem for their failure to fully recognize him and to remain loyal to him. How many of us and how many of the people we know and love maintain loyalty?

Does loyalty matter any more?
Rather than give further Biblical exposition today I believe I should ask whether there is anything for us to learn in our lives in the fellowship of believers on the matter of loyalty. The disciples who were so enthusiastic on the Sunday had run away by the Friday evening. Should we examine our own loyalty and think about loyalty in the church today? The consequences o

Disloyalty to a particular church
Even amongst people who call themselves Christians there is these days only a very weak sense of loyalty to the church -- as if you could be a Christian without being a member of the body of Christ in a very earthy and organic way. You can no more, with integrity, play fast and loose with communities of faith than you can with families or with lovers. So we have unfaithfulness both amongst people who have turned away of God, and amongst others who still look to God but act as individuals without regard for membership in the body. Should we accept the ways of the world or should we rather challenge, encourage and support all members of the body to carry through the commitments made in the enthusiasm of their Palm Sunday, beyond the points of pain on their Good Fridays, with all love and care, sharing at the deepest level, so that they can still share with us in the joy of Easter Day?

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Order of Service - Lent 6 Year A

The Gathering of the People of God

PROCESSIONAL HYMN 250 All glory, praise and honour

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with all of you. -- 2 Corinthians 13:13
And also with you.
O give thanks to the LORD, for he is good;
his steadfast love endures forever!
Let Israel say,
"His steadfast love endures forever." -- Psalms 118:1-2

Jesus said: "Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest." -- Matthew 11:28
Almighty God our Father, we have sinned against you and one another;we have sinned in thought, word and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. In your mercy forgive what we have been, help us to correct what we are, and direct what we shall be; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
If we confess our sins,
God is faithful and just, and will forgive our sins
and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. [1 John 1:9]
Hear then Christ's word of grace to us:
Your sins are forgiven.
Thanks be to God.

DOXOLOGY: HYMN 576 Now to him who loved us

Service of the Word
INTRODUCTION OF THEME: Greeting and loyalty
A word to the children -- palms for an exciting day

OLD TESTAMENT Isaiah 50:4-9a It is the Lord who helps me
PSALM 118:1-2,19-29 Open to me the gates of righteousness
EPISTLE Philippians 2:5-11 he emptied himself, taking the form of a servant
GOSPEL Matthew 21:1-11 The entry to Jerusalem

HYMN SA 8 As Jesus came to Jerusalem


HYMN 264 Ride on, ride on in majesty

We believe in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited, but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness. And being found in human form, he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death-- even death on a cross. Therefore God also highly exalted him and gave him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. -- Philippians 2:5-11

TE DEUM [Choir]
SHARING TIME [Notices, celebrations, requests for intercessions]
[Note: We regularly offer a special prayer for each Sunday which is being used in the Church generally. This prayer is called the "collect" for the day. It is a prayer which "collects together" or gathers up the main ideas in the worship for this particular occasion in the Christian year. It picks up themes mainly from the Bible readings in the common lectionary which guides many churches around the world, and thus it is a sign of our unity with other Christians. Today, actually has two main themes:- one is for Palm Sunday using Matthew's account of the entry of Jesus to Jerusalem which we have followed this morning; the other theme is for today as Passion Sunday, which will be the theme this evening service.]

(Passion Sunday)
Almighty and everlasting God,
in your tender love for the human race
you sent your Son our Saviour 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.

(Palm Sunday)
0 Lord Jesus Christ,
who as on this day entered the rebellious city
where you were to die,
enter into our hearts and subdue them wholly to yourself.
And, as your faithful disciples blessed your coming,
and spread their garments in the way,
covering it with palm branches,
make us ready to lay at your feet
all that we have and are,
and to bless you, the One who comes in the name of the Lord.

THE LORD'S PRAYER [Front of the Hymn Book]

The Sending Forth of the People of God

HYMN 522 O master let me walk with you

Go in peace to love and serve the Lord:
In the name of Christ. Amen.

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