April 10, 2022 Passion Sunday

Worship Resources for
the Center for Faith and Giving

Passion Sunday

Isaiah 50:4-9a

Psalm 31:9-16

Philippians 2:5-11

Luke 22:14 – 23:56

Some congregations use this Sunday to focus on the Passion of Christ (especially if they will not have a Good Friday service).  One suggestion is to use Luke’s text as readers’ theatre, during the time ordinarily allotted for scripture reading and sermon.  4 parts, plus several places where the whole congregation speaks out as the “crowd”, may be found here:  https://oratiocontemplativa.wordpress.com/readers-theater-3/

Or, if you focus on the Passion, but will not use the whole text,
here are additional resources.

Call to Worship 

Voice 1:  Today we come to worship God, remembering Jesus’ last meal
               with his disciples, his arrest, trial, and his crucifixion between
               two criminals.
Voice 2:  Today, we set aside our own challenges, joys and fears, so we
               might enter into the reality of Jesus’ passion, stepping into death
               that the world might more truly know life.
Voice 1:  So let us open our eyes, our ears and our hearts, as we tell the
               old, old story for this present day.
Voice 2:  Let us worship God, who so loves the world that God continues to
               offer Emmanuel to you, to me, and to our whole and holy world.

Opening Prayer 

Gracious God, Giver of Life Abundant,
We come together today, preparing to step into the reality of Jesus’ life and death. 
We’re not eager to re-live the betrayal, the brokenness, the last breath, or the burial of the One we claim as “the Christ”.  And yet, we give thanks that in this hour, we once more claim our identity as disciples of Christ. 

Help us be true learners and faithful followers, even in the face of pain.  Strengthen us, that we might not turn away, but remain steadfast.
Stand with us, even as we enter into Jesus’ breathing his last.  AMEN

Moment for Stewardship 

One of the most challenging Gospel stories of Peter comes when Jesus predicts Peter’s denial.  Peter gives this declaration to Jesus: “I’m ready to go with you to prison and to death!”  Jesus responds, “the cock will not crow this day, until you have denied three times that you know me.”

Most of us can identify with Peter;
     wanting to be a true disciple, yet caught by expediency. 
     Yearning to declare, vigorously, our relationship to Jesus,
               but fearful of losing too much.

What declarations have you made, as a follower of Jesus? 
What are you willing to give as a disciple of this teacher/healer/savior?

In this worship hour, we invite you to intentional giving of your time, your talent and your treasure.  (Make your appeal for any special offering connected to Holy Week or Easter)
May this hour and this week be a time to act out your faith in ways which make clear your identity.

Prayer of Thanksgiving

Gracious God, accept our desire to be faith-filled followers of Jesus.  Receive these gifts, and our good intentions.  Put it all into ways of building up your Realm on earth, as it is in heaven.  AMEN

Invitation to Communion 

In Luke’s Gospel, the Passion story begins with this phrase:  “when the hour came, (Jesus) took his place at the table, and the apostles with him.”

Today, the hour has come.  We, like the apostles, have gathered to share a meal with Jesus.  However, today this meal is set in the shadow of the cross. 

Back in 1707, Isaac Watts first published his hymn, “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross” for use at the Lord’s Supper (CH #195).  A contemporary setting of that hymn, sung by Michael W. Smith, is our communion music:  (if you don’t have anyone to sing this, you might use this setting —

You’re welcome at this meal, where “love so amazing, so divine, demands (our) soul(s), (our) lives, (our) all.”