Palm Sunday blessing page header

Holy Week and Easter ~ Palm Sunday at Home With Blessing of Palms

May the grace, mercy and peace of God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ be with us all.

Dear Friends in Christ,
during Lent we have been preparing
by works of love and self-sacrifice
for the celebration of our Lord’s death and resurrection.
Today we come together to begin this solemn celebration
in union with the Church throughout the world.
Christ enters his own city to complete his work as our Saviour, to suffer, to die, and to rise again.
Let us go with him in faith and love, so that,
united with him in his sufferings,
we may share his risen life.

The Palms are blessed

God our Saviour,
whose Son Jesus Christ
entered Jerusalem as Messiah to suffer and to die,
let these palms be for us signs of his victory;
and grant that we who bear them in his name
may ever hail him as our King,
and follow him in the way that leads to eternal life;
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
now and for ever. Amen.

The Palm Sunday Gospel

Matthew 21.1-11

When they had come near Jerusalem and had reached Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, 2saying to them, ‘Go into the village ahead of you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her; untie them and bring them to me. 3If anyone says anything to you, just say this, “The Lord needs them.” And he will send them immediately.’ 4This took place to fulfil what had been spoken through the prophet, saying,

5 ‘Tell the daughter of Zion,
Look, your king is coming to you,
   humble, and mounted on a donkey,
     and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’

6The disciples went and did as Jesus had directed them; 7they brought the donkey and the colt, and put their cloaks on them, and he sat on them. 8A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. 9The crowds that went ahead of him and that followed were shouting,

‘Hosanna to the Son of David!
   Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!
Hosanna in the highest heaven!’

10When he entered Jerusalem, the whole city was in turmoil, asking, ‘Who is this?’ 11The crowds were saying, ‘This is the prophet Jesus from Nazareth in Galilee.’

This hymn is traditionally sung:

Hymn

Ride on, ride on in majesty!
Hark, all the tribes hosanna cry,
Thy humble beast pursues his road
With palms and scattered garments strowed.

Ride on, ride on in majesty!
In lowly pomp ride on to die:
O Christ, thy triumphs now begin
O'er captive death and conquered sin.

Ride on, ride on in majesty!
The winged squadrons of the sky
Look down with sad and wondering eyes
To see the approaching sacrifice.

Ride on, ride on in majesty!
Thy last and fiercest strife is nigh;
The Father on his sapphire throne
Awaits his own anointed Son.

Ride on, ride on in majesty!
In lowly pomp ride on to die;
Bow thy meek head to mortal pain,
Then take, O God, thy power, and reign.

Words Henry Milman 1791-1868
Tune WINCHESTER NEW
Musicalisches Hand-Buch 1690

It is traditionally followed by this hymn:

Hymn

All glory, laud and honour
   To thee, Redeemer, King,
To whom the lips of children
   Made sweet hosannas ring.

Thou art the King of Israel,
  Thou David's royal Son,
Who in the Lord’s name comest,
  The King and blessed One.

The company of angels
  Are praising thee on high,
And mortal men and all things
  Created make reply.      

The people of the Hebrews
  With palms before thee went;
Our praise and prayer and anthems
  Before thee we present.

To thee before thy passion
  They sang their hymns of praise;
To thee, now high exalted,
  Our melody we raise.

Thou didst accept their praises,
  Accept the prayers we bring,
Who in all good delightest,
  Thou good and gracious King.

Words St Theodulph of Orleans d. 821
Tune ST THEODULPH
J. M. Neale 1816-66 M. Teschner c. 1613,

The Collect for Palm Sunday

Almighty and everlasting God, who in your tender love towards the human race sent your Son our Saviour Jesus Christ to take upon him our flesh and to suffer death upon the cross: grant that we may follow the example of his patience and humility, and also be made partakers of his resurrection; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

The Readings

At the end of the readings

This is the word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

Isaiah 50.4-9a

The Lord God has given me
   the tongue of a teacher,
that I may know how to sustain
   the weary with a word.
Morning by morning he wakens—
   wakens my ear
   to listen as those who are taught.
5 The Lord God has opened my ear,
   and I was not rebellious,
   I did not turn backwards.
6 I gave my back to those who struck me,
   and my cheeks to those who pulled out the beard;
I did not hide my face
   from insult and spitting.

7 The Lord God helps me;
   therefore I have not been disgraced;
therefore I have set my face like flint,
   and I know that I shall not be put to shame;
8   he who vindicates me is near.
Who will contend with me?
   Let us stand up together.
Who are my adversaries?
   Let them confront me.
9 It is the Lord God who helps me;
   who will declare me guilty?
All of them will wear out like a garment;
   the moth will eat them up.

 Philippians 2.5-11

Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus,
6 who, though he was in the form of God,
   did not regard equality with God
   as something to be exploited,
7 but emptied himself,
   taking the form of a slave,
   being born in human likeness.
And being found in human form,
8   he humbled himself
   and became obedient to the point of death—
   even death on a cross.

9 Therefore God also highly exalted him
   and gave him the name
   that is above every name,
10 so that at the name of Jesus
   every knee should bend,
   in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
11 and every tongue should confess
   that Jesus Christ is Lord,
   to the glory of God the Father.

A dramatic reading of the Gospel of The Passion

A dramatised reading can be found below.

Alternatively, Matthew 26-27 may be read.  The text is here (Link)

Silence is kept.

The Prayers of Penitence

God shows his love for us in that, while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Let us then show our love for him by confessing our sins in penitence and faith.

Most merciful God,
Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
we confess that we have sinned
in thought, word and deed.
We have not loved you with our whole heart.
We have not loved our neighbours as ourselves.
In your mercy forgive what we have been,
help us to amend what we are,
and direct what we shall be;
that we may do justly, love mercy,
and walk humbly with you, our God.  Amen.

May almighty God, who forgives all who truly repent, have mercy upon us, pardon and deliver us from all our sins, confirm and strengthen us in all goodness, and keep us in life eternal; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Silence for private prayer may be kept.

The Lord’s Prayer

Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours
now and for ever.  Amen.

 Lord Jesus Christ, you humbled yourself in taking the form of a servant, and in obedience died on the cross for our salvation: give us the mind to follow you and to proclaim you as Lord and King, to the glory of God the Father. Amen.

The Blessing

May Christ crucified draw us to himself, so that we find in him a sure ground for faith, a firm support for hope, and the assurance of sins forgiven; and the blessing of God almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, be among us, and remain with us always. Amen.

We go in peace to love and serve the Lord.

In the name of Christ. Amen.

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This year we shall be celebrating Holy Week and Easter differently because of the current Coronavirus situation. Please click on the links below to access the relevant pages.