PALM FRIDAY SERVICE
Friday 3rd April 2020
If possible gather with family or individually and go through this service at 10am on Friday 3rd April , and know that you are worshipping with your St Thomas family.
Brothers and sisters in Christ. Today we remember Jesus' triumphant entry into Jerusalem, riding on a donkey, with his disciples waving palm branches and singing 'Hosanna to the Son of David'. Jesus knew what he was facing as he came into that city. He knew the suffering that was ahead of him. It is easy to think that he would not have humanly felt like being triumphant at that moment. But Jesus' hope was bigger than the suffering of the present time. We also are receiving warnings of ongoing suffering in this world. We know that the COVID-19 pandemic is going to take more lives. None of us know to what level we are going to be personally affected by this. But we also do know that our hope is bigger than the suffering of the present age. We have a Saviour who understands our suffering and stands beside us in it. We have a hope and we have a future. So let us continue to stand strong as a community in Christ and worship together through this online service.
Select one person to be the service leader, they will lead with the regular text and everyone else will respond with the text in bold.
Prepare your hearts and minds for worship with the following worship song.
Grace, mercy and peace
from God our Father
and the Lord Jesus Christ
be with you
All: and also with you
Rejoice! rejoice! Shout for joy! Look! Your king is coming to you, triumphant and victorious,
but humble and gentle, riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey. Zechariah 9:9
All: Hosanna to the Son of David!
Blessed is He who comes in the Name of the Lord.
All: Hosanna in the highest!
O Lord send your blessing on these palm crosses and on those who receive them; that both now and in the days to come they may remind them of your loving sacrifice for them and your eternal victory over sin and
Hosanna to the Son of David!
Blessed is He who comes in the Name of the Lord.
All: Hosanna in the highest!
Prayer Over the Palms
Psalm 118: 1-2, 19-29
Give thanks to the Lord, because he is good. His faithful love continues forever!
All: Let the people of Israel say, ‘His faithful love continues forever.’
Open for me the gates where the godly can go in. I will enter and give thanks to the Lord.
All: This is the gate of the Lord. Only those who do what is right
can go through it.
Lord, I will give thanks to you, because you answered me. You have saved me.
All: The stone the builders didn’t accept has become the most
important stone of all.
The Lord has done it. It is wonderful in our eyes.
All: The Lord has done it one this day. Let us be joyful today and be glad.
Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit.
As it was in the beginning, is now and shall be forever.
Introduction to the Service
Dear brothers and sisters 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.
Liturgy of the Palms
(a moment of silent reflection as we call to mind our sins)
All: Holy one, beloved of God, we rally to your side cheering and
waving, caught up in the excitement and the drama of the
procession. We sing of God’s triumph over the enemies who
hold us captive, but refuse to help others in need.
We cry, "Hosanna! Save us!" while believing ourselves saved already.
In your mercy, O Christ, forgive us.
For failing to speak truth to the powerful and love to the fearful, forgive us.
Forgive us our failure to follow.
Forgive us our failure to love.
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.
As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied there, with her colt by her. Untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says anything to you, say that the Lord needs them, and he will send them right away.”
This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet:
“Say to Daughter Zion,
‘See, your king comes to you,
gentle and riding on a donkey,
and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’”
The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. They brought the donkey and the colt and placed their cloaks on them for Jesus to sit on. A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted,
“Hosanna to the Son of David!”
“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”
“Hosanna in the highest heaven!”
When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, “Who is this?”
The crowds answered, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.”
In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:
Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
rather, he made himself nothing
by taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross!
Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
and gave him the name that is above every name,
that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.
The passion of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Matthew
Meanwhile Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor asked him, “Are you the king of the Jews?”
“You have said so,” Jesus replied.
When he was accused by the chief priests and the elders, he gave no answer. Then Pilate asked him, “Don’t you hear the testimony they are bringing against you?” But Jesus made no reply, not even to a single charge—to the great amazement of the governor.
Now it was the governor’s custom at the festival to release a prisoner chosen by the crowd. At that time they had a well-known prisoner whose name was Jesus Barabbas. So when the crowd had gathered, Pilate asked them, “Which one do you want me to release to you: Jesus Barabbas, or Jesus who is called the Messiah?” For he knew it was out of self-interest that they had handed Jesus over to him.While Pilate was sitting on the judge’s seat, his wife sent him this message: “Don’t have anything to do with that innocent man, for I have suffered a great deal today in a dream because of him.”
But the chief priests and the elders persuaded the crowd to ask for Barabbas and to have Jesus executed.
“Which of the two do you want me to release to you?” asked the governor.
“Barabbas,” they answered.
“What shall I do, then, with Jesus who is called the Messiah?” Pilate asked.
They all answered, “Crucify him!”
“Why? What crime has he committed?” asked Pilate.
But they shouted all the louder, “Crucify him!”
When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but that instead an uproar was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd. “I am innocent of this man’s blood,” he said. “It is your responsibility!”
All the people answered, “His blood is on us and on our children!”
Then he released Barabbas to them. But he had Jesus flogged, and handed him over to be crucified.
Then the governor’s soldiers took Jesus into the Praetorium and gathered the whole company of soldiers around him. They stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him, and then twisted together a crown of thorns and set it on his head. They put a staff in his right hand. Then they knelt in front of him and mocked him. “Hail, king of the Jews!” they said. They spit on him, and took the staff and struck him on the head again and again. After they had mocked him, they took off the robe and put his own clothes on him. Then they led him away to crucify him.
As they were going out, they met a man from Cyrene, named Simon, and they forced him to carry the cross. They came to a place called Golgotha (which means “the place of the skull”). There they offered Jesus wine to drink, mixed with gall; but after tasting it, he refused to drink it. When they had crucified him, they divided up his clothes by casting lots. And sitting down, they kept watch over him there. Above his head they placed the written charge against him: this is jesus, the king of the jews.
Two rebels were crucified with him, one on his right and one on his left. Those who passed by hurled insults at him, shaking their heads and saying, “You who are going to destroy the temple and build it in three days, save yourself! Come down from the cross, if you are the Son of God!” In the same way the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the elders mocked him. “He saved others,” they said, “but he can’t save himself! He’s the king of Israel! Let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him. He trusts in God. Let God rescue him now if he wants him, for he said, ‘I am the Son of God.’” In the same way the rebels who were crucified with him also heaped insults on him.
From noon until three in the afternoon darkness came over all the land. About three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lemasabachthani?” (which means “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”).
When some of those standing there heard this, they said, “He’s calling Elijah.”
Immediately one of them ran and got a sponge. He filled it with wine vinegar, put it on a staff, and offered it to Jesus to drink. The rest said, “Now leave him alone. Let’s see if Elijah comes to save him.”
And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit.
At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook, the rocks split and the tombs broke open. The bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life. They came out of the tombs after Jesus’ resurrection and went into the holy city and appeared to many people.
When the centurion and those with him who were guarding Jesus saw the earthquake and all that had happened, they were terrified, and exclaimed, “Surely he was the Son of God!”
This is the Passion of the Lord
Once we were far off,
but now in union with Christ Jesus we have been brought near through the shedding of Christ’s blood,
for he is our peace.
The peace of the Lord be always with you
All: and also with you
Let us share with one another a sign of God's peace.
Collect for the Palm Friday
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.
Spend a few minutes bringing to God your own concerns and needs
As our saviour taught us, so we pray:-
All: 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
The Passion Gospel
May the Father,
who so loved the world that he gave his only Son,
bring us by faith to his eternal life.
who accepted the cup of sacrifice
in obedience to the Father’s will,
keep us steadfast as you walk with him the way of his cross.
May the Spirit,
who strengthens us to suffer with Christ
that we may share his glory,
set us minds on life and peace.
Go in peace to love and serve the Lord
All: In the name of Christ. Amen
Blessing and Dismissal
I pray God's Blessing upon you all now and in the weeks to come - Revd Charlie
May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ,
and the love of God,
and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit
be with you all.