CONGREGATIONAL UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST
30 N. CLINTON ST.
IOWA CITY, IA 52245
WORSHIP FOR APRIL 5, 2020
Jesus did not die in order to spare us the indignities of the wounded creation. He died that we might see those wounds as our own. He died that we might live and live fully and hopefully…in ambiguous reality here and now.
GREETING AND WELCOME
CALL TO WORSHIP
Lift up your heads, O people;
Look out from where you shelter.
God draws near.
Shout, O people. Rejoice and praise.
Praise the God who loves us.
Let us face with courage the path before us.
Blessed is the One who comes in God’s name.
CHILDREN’S PALM PROCESSION AND HYMN “Hosanna, Loud Hosanna
Hosanna, loud hosanna,
The little children sang;
Through pillared court and temple
The lovely anthem rang.
To Jesus, who had blessed them,
And brought them to his side,
The children sang their praises,
As onward he did ride.
From Olivet they followed
Mid an exultant crowd,
The victor palm branch waving,
And chanting clear and loud.
The Lord of earth and heaven
Rode on in lowly state,
Nor scorned that little children
Should on his bidding wait.
“Hosanna in the highest!”
That ancient song is ours.
We hail our great Redeemer,
And sing with all our powers.
“Hosanna, Christ, we praise you
with heart and life and voice,
Hosanna in your presence
forever we’ll rejoice.
O God, the week begins and we still find ourselves moving forward over rough ground.
We are sad as we leave behind our familiar paths.
Be with us in our sadness and help us accept the loss of these ways.
Go with us as we establish new routines and manage new demands.
We are grateful that we have the resources to adapt to what life asks of us now.
As we look out from our own situations, we worry as we see others struggling to find ways to be safe, to have enough to eat, and to cope.
So much of what is happening to others seems beyond our reach.
Give us the resolve as a country, as a congregation, and as individuals to discover how to meet human need. We believe that you are the God of possibility and that with you we can make a way out of no way. We ask for your continuing presence with us this week. Amen.
SCRIPTURE LESSON Zechariah 9:9-12
PSALM 118:1-2, 19-29
Give thanks to the Lord, who is good,
whose mercy endures forever.
Let Israel now proclaim,
"The mercy of the Lord endures forever."
Open for me the gates of righteousness;
I will enter them;
I will offer thanks to the Lord.
"This is the gate of the Lord;
those who are righteous may enter."
I will give thanks to you, for you answered me
and have become my salvation.
The same stone which the builders rejected
has become the chief cornerstone.
This is the Lord's doing,
and it is marvelous in our eyes.
This is the day God has made;
we will rejoice and be glad in it.
Hosanna, Lord, hosanna!
Lord, send us now success.
Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord;
we bless you from the house of the Lord.
God is the Lord, who has shined upon us;
form a procession with branches up to the horns of the altar.
"You are my God, and I will thank you;
you are my God, and I will exalt you."
Give thanks to the Lord, who is good;
whose mercy endures forever.
SCRIPTURE LESSON Matthew 21:1-17
SERMON “Before They Get Better”
A TIME OF GRATITUDE
SOLO “The Palms” Jean-Baptiste Fauré
PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE AND THE LORD’S PRAYER
HYMN “Before the Cross of Jesus”
Before the cross of Jesus
Our lives are judged today;
The meaning of our eager strife
Is tested by his way.
Across our restless living
The light streams from his cross,
And by its clear, revealing beams
We measure gain and loss.
The hopes that lead us onward,
The fears that hold us back,
Our will to dare great things for God,
The courage that we lack,
The faith we keep in goodness,
Our love, as low or pure -
On all, the judgment of the cross
Falls steady, clear, and sure.
Yet humbly, in our striving,
O God, we face its test.
We crave the power to do your will
With Him who did it best.
On us let now the healing
Of his great Spirit fall,
And make us brave and full of joy
To answer to his call.
After worship please join us on the Congregational UCC of Iowa City Group Page for a virtual coffee hour. Here’s the link to that page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1363552690498867/.
The Virtual Coffee Hour will begin at 10:55 on Sunday morning.