Worship Order for Sunday

Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren
Long Green & Kanes Rds., near Glen Arm, Md.
April 17, 2011
Worship 10:00 am              Sunday School 11:10am

Palm Sunday 

      And going a little farther, he threw himself on the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me; yet not what I want but what you want. (Matthew 27:39)

  Beginning with Praise (9:50 am)      "When I survey the wondrous cross"       260
  Prelude                                       "The Palms"                                         Faure

The Palms

*Call to Worship                                                                     (back of bulletin)

*Prayer of Invocation

*Hymn                              "All glory, laud, and honor"                                 237

  Scripture                                 Matthew 21:1-11

  For Children    

  Hymn                                "Hosanna, loud hosanna"                                 238

  Returning our Tithes and Offerings

  Offertory                   "Into the Woods My Master Went"                      Lutkin
                                        (Please sign the attendance pad and pass it on)

The Passion

  Sharing a joy, a concern, a word of testimony or praise
                                 (please be brief, and aware of God's listening presence)

  Pastoral Prayer

  Hymn                        "Tis midnight, and on Olive’s brow"                          241

  Scripture                                Matthew 26:36-46

  Message                           "A Drinking Prayer" (mp3)

*Hymn                               "Go to dark Gethsemane"                                 240


*Postlude                     "How Shallow Former Shadows"                         Tallis

*Rise in body or in spirit

#'s are from Hymnal: A Worship Book

Worship leaders - see basic guidelines

Call to Worship

Leader:   Look, your king is coming to you!

People:   Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!

Leader:   Come with those who gather to welcome Jesus.

People:   We lay our lives before him in honor and praise.

Leader:   Hosanna to the Son of David!

People:   Hosanna in the highest heaven!

by David W. Miller, pastor of nurture
Black Rock Church of the Brethren Glenville, Pennsylvania
Church of the Brethren Living Word Bulletin
Anchor/Wallace, Sleepy Eye MN 56085, "The Living Word Series"

Opening Prayer

            Lord Jesus, King who rides a lowly beast, Savior who comes to us in humble majesty, we puzzle over those who ask, "Who is this?" when your glory is clear to us. Help us remember why we sing, "Hosanna!" Renew our spirits, refresh our faith, and grant us courage to be among those who sing your praise with joyful abandon as you ride into our lives. All glory, laud, and honor to you, our Redeemer, in whose name we pray. Amen.

by David W. Miller, pastor of nurture
Black Rock Church of the Brethren Glenville, Pennsylvania
Church of the Brethren Living Word Bulletin
Anchor/Wallace, Sleepy Eye MN 56085, "The Living Word Series"

For Children

            Together, we'll piece together the events celebrated on this day in the gospel accounts. While the ushers pass out tepi palms to those in the pews, every child will get one and we'll act out the story, marching around the sanctuary while everyone sings "Hosanna, loud hosanna."

Returning our Tithes and Offerings

This is a day of mixed emotions in the journey through Lent toward Easter. On the one hand is the story to which we just listened and enjoyed acting out. Jesus is on top of the world, a pop star surrounded by adoring fans wanting just a piece of him, or so it seems. Of course, that’s the problem. Everyone wants a piece of him, especially those who feel threatened by his message and his popularity. One of the very first things he does upon entering Jerusalem is to head to the Temple, which he calls his father’s house. Sickened by how religion has been made into a for-profit business, he overturns some tables and drives out animals that are being sold to poor pilgrims (probably at a hefty mark-up) for their offerings to God. Needless to say, this did not endear him to the religious establishment. It’s only a matter of time before they get their piece of him, biding their time to do him in and thus return things to normal.

            We call this space of time from Palm Sunday to Easter – “Holy Week,” but let’s be honest: what lies ahead is anything but holy. Unless you the bigger picture. Come Thursday night he will be arrested on trumped up charges, betrayed by a friend, denied by another. From one court to the next he will be dragged, beaten repeatedly in between, looking for a hanging judge. And then, on “Good Friday,” a title of mixed emotions if ever there was one, he will be marched down the executioner’s path to a spot outside town where criminals and political prisoners are strung up as an example to everyone else, and there nails will pound into his flesh and he’ll be raised up on a cross. Before the sun sets and Sabbath begins, Jesus will be dead, buried in a borrowed grave.

            Do you see why this day has us scratching our heads wondering whether to cheer or to cry? Maybe “Hosanna” is not an inappriated word for this hour. It doesn’t mean “hurray!” … “two, four six, eight, who do we appreciate? Jesus!” … It means, “God save us.” In light of what will happen in the days which follow, that is the prayer of the hour. Deliver us from evil. Yes! And God save us from ourselves.

            At this point in our service of worship today, we turn the corner from celebrating an exuberant entry into the city of David, toward remembering the passion of the events that followed. It’s like a cloud begins to cover the sun and a storm approaches. In the distance, however, we see the faint outline of a rainbow, assuring us in a “never again” fashion that the hand of God is behind the deluge about to begin. “Thy kingdom come,” pours the prayer, “thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”

            Of course, this is all in the past tense, you say, and that is true. It all happened a couple thousand years ago. Jesus died and rose again. Every morning is Easter morning, every day is resurrection day. Still, jumping from Palm Sunday to Easter without Good Friday is like a diet made up of desserts. It may taste good, but after a while your stomach aches for nutritious food. Speaking of which, Love Feast – our Brethren commemoration of the last supper of Jesus and his disciples in the upper room – will be this Thursday evening. Come and join us, a place at the Lord’s table is set for you.

            For now, we head into a time of returning our tithes and offerings. As the ushers collect what we have to give, think back to what Jesus did right after the palm branches waved him into Jerusalem. The offering system in the temple then was a perversion of what God intended, and Jesus endeavored to correct it. In but a few days, his very life became an offering as he made the final sacrifice. Ponder that as you pass the plates. Ushers?

Pastoral Prayer


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




In the garden, Jesus offered up his drinking prayer.
       “My Father, if this cup cannot pass unless I drink it, your will be done.”
Let us with one voice offer up our own to bring this worship to and close, the prayer he taught us saying,
       “Our Father….”

(para traducir a español, presione la bandera de España)


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

International Lesson:
Faith and Life Resources

Mennonite Publishing House

International Lesson:
Mennonite Weekly Review

(scroll down on left to "Sunday School lessons)

International Lesson:
Christian Standard
(one week ahead)

International Lesson:
Living Web Sunday School Project

International Lesson:
Adult Bible Studies
from The United Methodist Publishing House
(click "supplemental resources" and "current events supplement" under both the "Student" and "Teacher" sections in the left hand column)

While one of our adult classes follows the International lesson above (see also), using
A Guide for Biblical Studies,
published quarterly by our denomination,
another class often uses one of the
Good Ground series.

For children and youth, we use the new
Gather Round curriculum
(developed jointly by the Church of the Brethren and the Mennonite Church)


©2010 Peter L. Haynes
(unless otherwise stated, worship resources were written by him)


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