This Sunday with come with our palms to welcome Jesus into Jerusalem. But even in the midst of this celebration, we know we are growing ever closer to the cross. A communion liturgy for Palm Sunday.
We gather again after a busy few days in Jerusalem with Jesus. The crowds grew as Jesus taught near the Temple — as did the resistance against him. Jesus weeps over Jerusalem even as they reject who he is. We, too, are challenged by whom believe Jesus to be. Challenged, because unless we dismiss him as merely a historical figure, what we believe about Jesus requires a response.
As we ponder all that has happened, not yet in the upper room, let us offer our thanksgiving for the God who calls us, loves us, and sustains us.
Prayer of Thanksgiving
God who speaks in many ways, your creation proclaims your glory. Our voices of praise join singing birds, crashing waves, and the whispering of the wind through the trees. From your word made manifest in nature to the prophets you sent when we turned away, we give thanks that you still speak to us today.
Jesus who wept for us, your grace is not bound by the limits of our faithfulness. In love you told us parables that we might know who you are. You performed miracles that displayed your power. All of this that we might open ourselves to you. For your radical love, we give our thanks.
Spirit who lives and moves within us, you continue to make yourself known. You reveal yourself when truth is spoken to power. You lay bare the half-truths and intentional misunderstanding that we use to shield ourselves from the challenges of discipleship. At the same time, you nurture hope within us that we might be Christ’s love in the world. How thankful we are for your careful tending of our hearts.
As we gather here in the name of the Triune God, we humbly ask that you would be the Spirit of Grace among us. Surround us with your presence and bring us into communion with our Risen Lord. Make the loaf and cup more than symbols of grace as we are joined as the Body of Christ.
As a sign of our unity in you, we join our voices together to pray, saying: Our Father…
As we gather at this table, we are not recreating the Passover over meal or even the Last Supper. Our communion is more than a memorial of ancient times. Just as God is the God of the living for to God all our alive, we gather here to be in the presence of our Living Lord.
It’s not that we don’t remember. For we recall how Jesus multiplied five loaves of bread so that over 5,000 hungry and tired people could be fed, with leftovers in abundance. And we recall a wedding in Cana when Jesus made six stone jars of water become a wine most excellent, shielding the new couple from shame.
In his life, death, and resurrection, Jesus made the bread and the wine the very giving of himself to us. When we come to this table, it is our renewed and renewing communion with our Risen Lord.
Prayer After Communion
God of hope, we give you thanks for the blessing of our communion with you. May you guide us in faithfulness as we move through Holy Week. From the upper room to the empty tomb, we seek to be where you are. Amen.
If you are looking for more liturgical resources, please consider checking out my books:
Prayers for the People: Scripturally Based Prayers for Worship is a collection of prayers for worship. These prayers offer the worshipping community fresh perspectives for praying the words of Scripture, using current language and references. Cross-referenced to the Revised Common Lectionary, pastors seeking to lead their people in prayer have found a relevant and beautiful source for worship planning.
Come to the Table: Communion Liturgies of Invitation to Celebrate and Experience the Love of God is a collection of communion liturgies inviting worshippers to experience and respond to the Gospel. These meaningful liturgies enhance and reinforce the biblical message of the day. Worshippers are welcomed to the Table to experience the Word in preparation to go out into the world and live it. Come to the Table includes liturgies for the entire liturgical year providing pastors with a valuable resource in worship planning.