10.30am Service 5th April 2020: T4 Palm Sunday

What follows is an order of service with sung worship, prayers, readings, an all-age talk as well as a child-friendly talk (aimed for families with children aged 3-7yrs) and activities to follow. Please just follow the service below following the instructions at each stage. Please remember that if you click on a link to an external website such as YouTube you will need to return to this page by hitting the back page button (an arrow pointing to the left in the top left hand corner)  to continue.

Welcome and introduction
Welcome to our T4 Palm Sunday service for all-ages. We encourage you therefore to worship together as a family in your household, whatever the range of ages!

Click here  for a short message from Doug, our Vicar,  for Palm Sunday

Opening Prayer
(Please say this together, whoever is in your house)

Father God you are our awsome creator God.
Lord Jesus, you are our King, our brother and our friend.
Holy Spirit, you are our guide, our comforter and you walk beside us.
We come together, in separate houses, but together in worship, to praise your name, to hear your Word and to offer you our prayers.
We love you, knowing full well that you loved us first!
Amen


We say sorry to God
(We praise God in the knowledge that we will have things that we know we have to say sorry to God for. Take a moment to think about this past week. The say the foolwing prayer of confession...)

Lord God, we have done things that you taught us not to do.
ALL : we are sorry.

We have not done the things that you taught us that we should do.
ALL: we are sorry.

May the Father of all mercies cleanse us from our sins, and restore us in his image to the praise and glory of his name, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

Opening Sung Worship
(Please click on the song titles below and they will take you to a YouTube video of the song. When you finish, please return to this page to continue the service).

Come, now is the time to worship

Let our praise be your welcome

Theme introduction
Game:  Who is the king?  Either join in at home and guess who will be the king by the end of the clip or watch the instructions to the game and play your own version!  If you have more than three players, why not add some more characters (e.g. knight 'Clippity-clop' or magician 'Abracadabra')? (Click on the image below and press 'play.'  When finished, close the window and return to this page): 
Screenshot 2020-04-03 at 11.42

Reading
The reading today is based upon Matthew 21:1-11, Mark 11:1-11, Luke 19:28-44 and John 12:12-19
(Click on the image below and press 'play.'  When finished, close the window and return to this page)

008-rg-king-jesus

Song
I see the king of glory (Hosanna)

TALK
All-age talk Click here (Transcript at bottom of page)
Please click the 'Click here,' button above.  The talk runs automatically when started.   At the end, close the window by clicking the "x" in the top right hand corner to come back to this page and continue the service.

OR

Talk for families with children aged 3-7yrs. Click here Please pause the clip when you see the orange 'Pause' sign.
Please click the 'Click here' button.  The talk runs automatically when started.   At the end, close the window by clicking the "x" in the top right hand corner to come back to this page and continue the service.

Response
Our response to our King is to worship Him!  Come ready to freely and openly worship Jesus as we enter into Holy Week.  You may wish to make your own Palm leaves to wave as you worship!

Make your own palm leaf! Click image
Screenshot 2020-04-03 at 11.46

King of me (Actions included in talk 3-7yrs)

10,000 reasons


Prayers
Click here for prayers with the Egbunike Family.

Activity
Traditionally, palm crosses are distributed during the service as a reminder of Jesus' sacrifice throughout Holy Week and beyond.  To create your own palm cross, use 1cmx 60cm length of paper (2x thin strips of A4 taped together).  Follow instructions here.


Final song

This is amazing grace


Closing blessing
May the Lord bless us, may his face shine upon us, this day and every day.
AHHHHmennnnn!

Transcript of all-age talk
I wonder who your hero is? Whether when I say hero, you instantly think of superheroes with superpowers who go zooming off across the world or can fly up into the sky?
Maybe your idea of a hero is someone from history, someone who has changed the world in some way like Mother Tereasa or Martin Luther king or even if it’s a modern day hero like Greta Thunberg who is doing so much for the environment. Maybe your hero is someone other people don’t usually see, like farmers, shopworkers or medical staff.  I wonder who your hero is?
 
In our household, my parents have a group of heroes, and I say ‘Group’ for a reason. Their heroes are Abba!  As young people of the seventies, they love singing, dancing and all the music that is associated with that era!  So, my sister and I took my parents to see ‘Mamma mia - the party.’  It was a great time of fun, dancing, music, amazing food; it was an amazing time together! Incredibly, up in the balcony when we were there for the party, sat Bjorn.  My sister and I knew this was the moment my mum would love. So we went upstairs and spent time getting a photograph and chatting to Bjorn.  That was the 'Icing on the cake,' for my mum, for she got to meet her hero.  I wonder if you have ever met your hero how you would feel?
 
Today, we’re thinking about some people who got to meet their hero when Jesus entered into the city of Jerusalem.  What an incredible experience it must have been for each and every person there; to finally see the person they had heard so much about. They maybe had seen Jesus before and heard him teach or maybe they had met some of the people Jesus had healed, or maybe this was the first time seeing him.  It must have been so exciting! 
Now I have got a little confession to make. This week it was my birthday and I got lots of lovely gifts, cards, treats, clips and so many lovely things!  Another lovely thing about a birthday are the presents. Now, I am not your normal person when it comes to presents. Most people like to feel the present and look at the shape and try to work out what it is, but I don’t.  I love the surprise of not knowing and especially a present that is wrapped up without any clue as to what’s inside. But our story today, is a bit like a wrapped up present.  When Jesus entered Jerusalem there were loads of clues as to who he was and the greatest surprise was who he claimed to be.  
Now Jesus when he came into Jerusalem gave many clues. One of them was the fact that he rode an unridden donkey. In those days, to ride an animal that had been previously unridden was a sign of holiness.  It was used in holy festivals and big occasions to say, ‘This moment is holy.’ When Jesus came in, not only was the moment holy, but He was holy too.  
The fact that he rode a donkey was a ‘secret’ sign of humility; to be a servant.  He was not coming in saying he was mighty and powerful and shouting from the rooftops who he was, but to ride a donkey was to say that he put himself lower.  We hear how he is the servant yet he is still the king.
To ride a donkey also meant another thing too. It meant that he came in peace.  If he were to ride a horse, it meant that he was coming into battle, but to ride a donkey meant that he was bringing in the peace of God; not just to that city at that time, but bringing into the whole world for all time, His peace.
Everyone would know the scriptures, and when he came in riding a donkey, the whole of the crowd would know that the son of David had arrived, that the messiah, the one sent to save, had come into the city.
 
That was so exciting for the people.  They had been waiting for this day for years and years; waiting for the messiah to come. Here he was, entering into the city of Jerusalem with all the signs that he was God!  Interestingly, when Jesus had sent the two disciples to retrieve the animal, he had said, ’If anyone asks you what you are doing, say that the Lord needs it.’  Now if you know your Bible, you will know that Jesus usually refers to himself as ‘The Son of Man,’ but to call himself ‘Lord’ was to shout it out that he is God’s son!

Now the people when they saw all these signs responded. They took down leaves and branches from the trees and began to wave them.  I’m reminded of the Queen entering her palace and the people waving their flags.  If you look closely, you will see in John’s gospel that they were palm leaves.  Now palm leaves were only found in Jericho, and there was a road from Jerusalem to Jericho and along that road was the village of Bethphage where the donkeys were retrieved. To bring palm leaves and to wave those had a ‘secret’ symbol too.  It meant victory.  
So when someone had returned from battle,  they had defeated the enemy and they had won, it was palm leaves that they would wave. 
John who mentions these in his gospel also mentions them in the Book of Revelation.  When he sees a vision of Heaven, God’s people are around the throne holding palm leaves.  This is the great victory!  
So Jesus entering into the city of Jerusalem with the palm leaves being flown shows that Jesus has won the battle and the enemy is defeated.  
We have the joy of knowing the ‘Big’ story. We know that next Sunday, we celebrate ‘Resurrection Sunday,’ when the enemy is totally defeated and we celebrate that God has raised Jesus from the dead and because of what Jesus has done, each and every one of us can have a relationship with God – the big battle won! God is victorious.
 
So when the people begin to do this, they sing out too – they sing words of worship:
‘Hosanna to the Son of David.’
‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.’
‘Hosanna in the highest.’
All words talking about being saved and God being king.  These words can be found in Psalm 118.  If you look at that psalm, it is all about the whole of creation; all in Heaven and Earth celebrating God.
We hear also, that when Jesus is told to keep the people quiet, he says the beautiful words, ‘I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out.’
The whole of creation is there to worship God, to cry out to Him how amazing he is; that he is the king who enters the city humble, bringing peace, to save everyone and to bring victory.

Our response today is to worship God.  I'd love to encourage you to worship him with your whole heart. Ignore the people sitting on the sofa next to you!  Ignore that your neighbour might just hear you. In fact, challenge yourselves so that they can, as you sing out your praises to God!  We have an audience of one.  We have God who is worthy of our praise and so let us sing out to Him.
 
Please join me in prayer: Lord Jesus, we praise you that you are the King that enters into this place of our hearts. We welcome you with praises and singing.  We welcome you, our humble, servant king who brings peace, who brings us salvation and who brings us victory.  Receive our worship of you, today and always, amen.