Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Three Cheers: Palm Sunday

Here is a lesson idea for Palm Sunday.

“Then those who went ahead and those who followed were shouting, ‘Hosanna! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!’” Mark 11:9

Call to Worship
(Sing to Frere Jacques)
Hosanna! Hosanna!
Here Comes Jesus! Here Comes Jesus!
Riding on a donkey! Riding on a donkey!
Wave your palms! Wave your palms!
Hosanna! Hosanna!
In the highest! In the highest!
Blessed is Jesus! Blessed is Jesus!
Who comes in the name of the Lord!

Joys and Concerns
Have the children share a few joys and concerns they have and follow with a prayer thanking God for our joys and asking God to be with us in our concerns.

Ask: Have you ever cheered for someone or something?
(I cheer for my favorite football team, etc.)

Use the donkey puppet as you tell the story of Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem.

Say: Hee-haw, he-haw. I’m Dina the Donkey, and I’m the one who gave Jesus a ride into Jerusalem before Passover. I love outside the city, but I do go to the big city to do errands with my owner. On that day, I was quietly munching hay, when a very interesting man and his followers came near. His followers led me over to the man, who spoke softly to me and patted my nose. I liked him right away. You know, we donkeys can be stubborn and mean if we want to, but I decided I wanted to be nice to this man.

The man got on my back, and we began to walk toward the city. One of his followers called him “Jesus.” As we went along the road, people came out from their houses to walk with us. Workers left the fields too and shoppers on their way to market joined us. Everyone was happy and excited to see Jesus. They talked about the wonderful things he had said and done. They all agreed that Jesus was their savior and king.

Soon there was a crowd as far as you could see. The people began cheering for Jesus as they took off their cloaks and cut palm branches to lay in the road. My hoofs clopped over the most beautiful and the most ragged coats, because there were very rich and very poor people in the crowd. Jesus sat calmly on my back, and as the crowds began to press in closer and closer to see and touch him, he spoke gentle words to me; and I was not afraid of all those people.

Finally, he slid from my back and gave me to a kind person who served me water and a bit of food before taking me home. That was the most amazing day because I carried Jesus, the Savior, into Jerusalem. Hee-haw!

Make some streamer sticks to help celebrate Jesus! Take the crepe paper and allow the children to glue two strips onto the Popsicle sticks. Have a celebration parade outside if the weather permits or around the room saying, “Hosanna!” as you go.

Say: Hosanna! Let us tell the world about Christ and what he has done for us! Amen.

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