Circuit Worship: 28 March 2021

A service for Palm Sunday, led by Prof. David R. Matthews

The service this week is integrated into a single video. This is the only way to view the service this week – to play this click below or go here.

Resources for the service:

Reading: Mark 11. 1-11


Jesus, Lord of the Journey,
we thank you
that you set your face firmly towards Jerusalem,
with a single eye and pure intention,
knowing what lay ahead but never turning aside.

Jesus, Lord of the Palms,
we thank you
that you enjoyed the Hosannas of ordinary people,
living fully in that moment of delight
and accepting their praise.

Jesus, Lord of the Cross,
we thank you
that you went into the heart of our evil and pain,
along a way that was both terrible and wonderful,
as your kingship became your brokenness
and your dying became love’s triumph.

COVID POEM (Laura Kelley Fanucci)

When this is over,
may we never again
take for granted
A handshake with a stranger
Full shelves at the store
Conversations with neighbours
A crowded theatre
Friday night out
The taste of communion
A routine checkup
The school rush each morning
Coffee with a friend
The stadium roaring
Each deep breath
A boring Tuesday
Life itself.

When this ends,
may we find
that we have become
more like the people
we wanted to be
we were called to be
we hoped to be
and may we stay
that way
– better for each other
– better for the world
because of the worst.

INTERCESSIONS (Clare Matthews)

We offer to God our prayers for the world.

Loving Father, we pray for our Christian brothers and sisters around the globe who, in all sorts of places and situations and styles, are preparing to commemorate the events of Holy Week. May they bear faithful and attractive witness to the Easter gospel of hope and love which the world so urgently needs to hear. 

We ask your particular blessing on those who will be worshipping you in places where it is unsafe to be a Christian. May they be upheld and encouraged by your close presence. 

In a moment of silence we ask your blessing on our own church communities, asking that even when we are scattered and separate, we may continue to find ways of sharing and spreading your love. 

God of mercy and love.  Let us serve you in our world.

We pray for all nations embroiled in long-term conflicts, and for communities scarred by unrest and upheaval.  Grant wisdom to the world’s decision makers and a real desire for peace. May hearts which have been hardened by violence and self-interest discover a different light and a better way. 

We pray for progress in the global battle against the Covid pandemic, asking that our leaders will move forward in a spirit of generous co-operation to find a way to protect all people.

In a moment of silence, we each hold up to you a country or situation that is particularly on our minds. 

God of mercy and love.  Let us serve you in our world.

We hold up for your blessing the communities where we live and work, giving thanks for those who help them to run smoothly through their jobs or voluntary work or good neighbourliness.  Strengthen all efforts to build a tolerant, harmonious society where every member can flourish and the weak are cared for. 

In a moment of silence, we ask God to make each of us aware of ways in which we can better serve our neighbours and communities.

God of mercy and love.  Let us serve you in our world.

We hold up to your healing light the many, many people who are suffering in body, mind and spirit from the damage inflicted by Covid.  Draw close to them in their distress so that they may be aware of your strong arms holding them and your message of hope spoken to them. 

In a moment of silence, we each pray for one person we know who is in particular need of God’s comfort and peace.

God of mercy and love.  Let us serve you in our world.

Loving Lord, we thank you for bringing us together through this act of worship, wherever and whenever we are joining it.  As we embark on another Holy Week may we be excited all over again by its extraordinary message of indestructible love and boundless hope, and may the ripples of our excitement spread out into the world to draw others to you. 

We offer all our prayers in the name of your Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ. 


BLESSING  (John L. Bell)

On our heads and our houses
the blessing of God, 

on our coming and going,
the peace of God; 

in our life and believing, 
the love of God; 

at our end and new beginning, 
the arms of God to welcome us and bring us home. 

Organ Voluntary

Chorale prelude on ‘Valet will ich dir geben’, BWV 736 (J.S. Bach)
Wolfgang Zerer plays the organ of St Catherine’s Church, Hamburg

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