Worship Order for Sunday

Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren
Long Green & Kanes Rds., near Glen Arm, Md.
April 4, 2004
Worship 10:00 am Sunday School for all ages 11:15 am

Palm Sunday

      "I will give them one heart, and put a new spirit within them; I will remove the heart of stone from their flesh and give them a heart of flesh, so that they may follow my statutes and keep my ordinances and obey them. Then they shall be my people, and I will be their God."      (Ezekiel 11:19-20)

  Morning Praise (9:45 am)
  Announcements
  Prelude

...if these were silent,
the stones themselves would shout out

  Call to Worship                  Psalm 118:1-2, 19-29

*Hymn Medley            (vs. 1&3) "Hosanna, loud hosanna"                           238
                                  (vs. 1&2) "All glory, laud, and honor"                          237
                                           (vs. 1&4) "We will glorify"                       (see insert)

*Opening Prayer

  Dramatic Scripture Reading                                                      Luke 19:29-40
                           congregation repeats over and over when directed:
                 "Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!
                     Peace in heaven, and glory in the highest heaven!"

  Shalom!             "On that Day when He Rode into Jerusalem"                   Beall(
                                             (Pre-schoolers leave for playful worship)

like living stones,
let yourselves be built

  Returning our Tithes and Offerings

  Offertory

*Response                                  "Cornerstone"                                (see insert)

*Dedication

  Sharing a joy, a concern, a word of testimony or praise

  Quartet                              "All in the April Evening"                 Tynan/Roberton
                                                     (read the lyrics / hear the music)

  Pastoral Prayer

I will remove the heart of stone

  Scripture                                Ezekiel 36:25-28

  Message                            "the heart of stone"
               Fragile, living stones - a "Passion" series based upon 1 Peter 2:4-10

*Hymns                            "Beneath the cross of Jesus"                                250
                                       (vs.1,3&4)
"I stand amazed in the presence"                      528

*Benediction


#'s are from Hymnal: A Worship Book

Worship leaders - see basic guidelines

Opening Prayer

         We give thanks to you, Lord God. You are good, and your steadfast love does endure forever. Once again we remember the story of Christís passion, from "hosanna, blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord," to "crucify him!" As we tell the old, old story today, we open ourselves, not to be entertained, but to be inspired. May your Spirit move among us, as you have promised, for we are gathered in his name. Amen.
    

Dramatic Scripture Reading
Luke 19:29-40

[Staging - R (Scripture reader) reads from the lectern. J (Jesus) stands in front of the piano with D (a disciple). O (owner of the colt) stands in front of the organ. P (a Pharisee) is seated along the left aisle, ready to come forward. All get in place, ready to begin, toward the end of the preceding hymn. C is the rest of the congregation. R and P share a microphone, as do D and O.]

R - When Jesus had come near Bethphage and Bethany, at the place called the Mount of Olives, he sent two of the disciples, saying,

J - (to D) "Go into the village ahead of you, and as you enter it you will find tied there a colt that has never been ridden. Untie it and bring it here. If anyone asks you, ĎWhy are you untying it?í just say this, ĎThe Lord needs it.í"

(D then walks over to O and motions as if untying an animal, while R continues:)

R - So those who were sent departed and found it as he had told them. As they were untying the colt, its owners asked them,

O - (to D) "Why are you untying the colt?"

R - They said,

D - (to O) "The Lord needs it."

(D walks over to J, as if leading an animal. Meanwhile, the choir stands from where they are seated throughout the congregation and starts coming forward to where they will sing. Some bring with them "cloaks" and lay them on the floor in front of the worship table, before getting into position to sing. Itís not a problem if they havenít finished this task before C - the congregation - begins to shout.)

R - Then they brought it to Jesus; and after throwing their cloaks on the colt, they set Jesus on it. As he rode along, people kept spreading their cloaks on the road. As he was now approaching the path down from the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to praise God joyfully with a loud voice for all the deeds of power that they had seen, saying,

(R motions for C to stand and begin shouting the next line, something practiced earlier during the time of pre-worship announcements.)

C - "Hosanna! Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!
            Peace in heaven, and glory in the highest heaven!"

(C repeats this several times. Meanwhile, P comes forward and stands beside J. When choir is fully in place and R determines enough is enough, R motions for C to cease shouting and be seated - practiced earlier - and continues:)

R - Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him,

P - (to J) "Teacher, order your disciples to stop."

R - He answered,

J - (to J) "I tell you, if these were silent, the stones themselves would shout out."

(R, J, D, O, and P quietly return to their seats as choir then sings anthem.)
   

Returning our Tithes and Offerings

         And Jesus said, "if these people were silent, the stones themselves would shout out..." In our celebration of this special day this year, we are focusing less upon the "hosanna" parade of palm branches waved high, and more upon the stones which our Lord said would "shout out" if Godís people were to remain silent. Perhaps you were counting on taking home a palm leaf. Maybe next year. Today we ponder our journey with Jesus in light of the stones many of us have been carrying with us through the season of Lent. If you do not have one, please raise your hand as the offering plates are passed, and your usher will make sure you receive one. Also, be sure to sign and pass the attendance pads located on the center aisle side of each pew.

         Listen, again, to this invitation from 1 Peter 2:4-5: "Come to him, a living stone, though rejected by mortals yet chosen and precious in God's sight, and like living stones, let yourselves be built into a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ."

Ushers?
   

Dedication

         We thank you, O God, for the gift you gave to us and for us in Christ Jesus. We are here today because we seek for our lives to be built upon the foundation, the solid rock of his life and teachings, his death and resurrection. He is, indeed, the cornerstone of a whole new world. Forgive the ways in which we, even today, reject him. Help us to be "living stones" in Christ. May these offerings reflect your work in us. Through them (through us) may others see Jesus. In his name we pray. Amen.
   

Pastoral Prayer

 

written closer to the time (if not at the moment)

 

Benediction

 

 

Interested in Sunday School?
Below is a growing list of possible sites to visit. As you discover others, please let us know.

International Lesson thoughts
from the
Mennonite Publishing House

International Lesson
Commentary by
Richard Hughes
(posted on Saturday)

International Lesson
Commentary by
Edwin Elliott

 

©2003 Peter L. Haynes
(unless otherwise stated, worship resources were written by him)

 

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