Fellowship Time

After the service, we will have Fellowship Time in a Zoom video conference.  Details for joining will be shared via email and at the end of the live stream.


The Building is Closed and the Church is Open

While we have restricted access to the building, Peace Church is very much open to ministryworking to respond to our own congregation, as well as the needs of our neighbors and community.  Please consider giving either to Peace Church general fund or the Gabriel Fund – which is used to meet the needs in the community.

We recognize that in this time, people’s financial situations may have changed. We ask you to prayerfully consider what you can give.  If you use electronic giving, we thank you for your constancy of support.  If you would like to give through our online form, we would be grateful. For all the contributions from our members and friendswhether financial, time, or prayerwe ask God’s blessings on those gifts that Peace Church may be healing balm in this time when we are living in our own Gilead.

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April 5, 2020 ~ 10:30am

Palm Sunday

The People of Peace Church
Doug Bowen-Bailey, ASL Interpreter
Jim Pospisil, Music Director
Rev. Kathryn Nelson

Prelude  – Frost Bowen-Bailey & Jim Pospisil


Ringing of the Peace Bells

God is Revealed as We Gather

Responsive Call to Worship by Thom Shuman 

We come to prepare for the holiest of weeks.  
We will journey through praise, with joy on our lips; 
we will travel through betrayal and death,  
cradling hope deep in our hearts. 
Jesus leads us through this week, and we will follow, 
for he is the life we long for, he is the Word who sustains us. 
We wave palm branches in anticipation,  
we lay our love before him, to cushion his walk. 
Setting aside all power, glory, and might, he comes:   
modeling humility and obedience for all of us. 
Hosanna! Hosanna!  
Blessed is the One who brings us the realm of God. 

Opening Hymn    “All Glory, Laud, and Honor”       (#216) 



First Hymn

All Glory, Laud, and Honor

All glory, laud, and honor to you, O Christ, we sing,
to whom the lips of children made sweet hosannas ring!
The people of the Hebrews with palms adorned your way;
our praise and prayer and anthems we offer you this day.

O Promised One of Israel,of David’s royal line,
the one called “God’s beloved,”of flesh and yet divine,
to you, before your passion,they sang their hymns of praise;
to you, now high exalted, our melody we raise.

As you received their praises,receive our prayers today,
whose justice and whose mercy and sovereignty hold sway.
All glory, laud, and honor to you,O Christ, we sing,
to whom the lips of children made sweet hosannas ring!

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Ever constant God, mixing love and hope together, you  pave the way to you, but we prefer to stub our toes on the potholed roads of temptation. You will touch the cup of grace to our parched lips, but we seem to hunger for the ashy taste of bitterness. You beg us to learn the songs of salvation, but we hum along with the chorus that culture plays in the background of our lives. 

Have mercy upon us, God of Holiness. As you come to us, you bring healing for our brokenness, peace for our troubled lives, hope for our doubting minds. May we empty ourselves of everything which keeps us from following you.  Amen. 

Assurance of God’s Love 

Story for All Ages Nathan Holst, Faith Formation Minister  

God is Revealed in the Word

God’s Word in the Gospel: Matthew 21:1-11 

Special Music     “Jesus Alone”          sung by Mark Hakes 
composed by Paul S. Jones/poem by Christina Rossetti 

Sermon    Parades and Protests”  


Parades and Protests

Matthew 21:  1 – 11

Protests, parades, prayers . . We have had to think of whole new ways to organize in these days of physical distancing . .Our Climate Justice team met this week over zoom to think about  how to remember the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day which will be this April 22, We wonder now how to continue to speak out together in this time.

Our hearts have been broken open to one another as we shelter in place waiting, collectively holding our breath hoping to flatten the curve on this virus . . or at least buy time for our health care workers here.   We need places to gather, to pray, to speak out and we are finding them virtually.

Three years ago I was part of the Women’s March in St. Paul . . That seems so long ago now,  an impossibility in these days. But it was so powerful back then when I went with Sharon, our now Children’s Ministry Coordinator. . .   We gathered there with well over 60,000 others

On the steps of the capital we met Maggie,  a young native American dancer with a quilt project.  She had squares of red, pink and white fabric and black sharpie pens.  She asked us to write our hopes on a square, our dreams, words for this time.       I wrote the first words that came to my head . . Micah 6:8. . . What does the Lord require of you,  but to do justice, love kindness and walk humbly with our God. I Handed it back to her and she said  it they would be woven into a quilt and used in a dance that her studio was creating.

The parade, the protest and the dance goes on in a new form . . and we are all knitted one way or another into the fabric of this pivotal time.     How shall we participate? What words guide you . .

Jesus’ disciples had to decide what parade/ protest to be part of .  how would they participate or not in this very deliberate action of Jesus this Palm Sunday, an act of civil disobedience against the Roman Rule.

Jesus says .. Go – go into the city and find a donkey and her colt—go into that stall and grab them   – yeah sure. And if anyone thinks you are stealing it . . .tell them the Lord needs them – yeah sure.

They find the donkey,  and it all unfolds as Jesus said.    As Barbara Brown Taylor wrote, “ Wonder which of the disciples got this donkey duty – maybe James and John who just days earlier were arguing about who got the best seats in the kingdom of God.   Donkey detail to keep you on your toes, to keep you humble. So often that’s how it was and is — you have a passion for the kingdom, truly working on the side of God’s righteousness— easy to be come self important – and then you are given small jobs, — get the donkey,  count how many loaves and fishes they have, stay here, stay awake while I pray, fill the baskets with the left overs, wash each others feet.”

Humble tasks – reminders of Micah’s words —  What does the Lord require of you? — Do Justice,  Love Kindness and Walk Humbly with Your God. We are not Christ.   We are workers in the vineyard. We fetch the donkey and lay down our cloaks,  wave our palms for the one who leads the way. . we follow knowing all is holy ground because of Jesus who showed us how to love one another,  all the others. . Jesus who was known to stir things up. He healed on the Sabbath, even when it was forbidden by the law. He ate with sinners and tax collecters, even when it was frowned upon.  He taught women even when that was against the societal norm. He touched the unclean and helped to restore them to wholeness, even when it was in violation of the religious code.”

And we need to remember that this parade into Jerusalem was actually a protest march.     It was a deliberate challenge to those in power  as Borg and Crossan talk about in their book   “The Last Week, is that there were two parades– a peasant procession, and an imperial procession.    Jesus rode a donkey down the Mount of Olives, he had come a 100 miles from the north, He was from the peasant village of Nazareth, his message was about the Kingdom of God— a reign of peace, where people were called to community not used as a commodity.   Jesus came teaching – blessed are the poor, the peacemakers, the merciful. Love God, Love neighbor. Jesus taught and healed and now he dared to go to Jerusalem during the Passover. He rode into town with his disciples and followers

On the opposite side of the city from the west,   Pontius Pilate, the Roman Governor entered Jerusalem at the head of a column of cavalry and soldiers.   Pilates procession was a demonstration of power through force—there to quash any thoughts of uprising during the Festival of Passover – Seder which celebrated the Hebrew peoples liberation

Two   very different processions,   two very different ways of being in the world,  two very different Gods—Who will we follow? Israel’s God of Liberation for the poor and oppressed  or Ceasar’s God of violence and power over others. Jesus procession deliberately countered what was happening on the other side of the city.   Pilates is a ride of power , wealth and violence that ruled the world. Jesus procession embodied an alternative vision—way of God-justice and mercy.-     two kingdoms, two ways of being in the world that both go Into Jerusalem and collide.

We have seen the same thing with the Coronavirus two ways of being in the world have collided . We will have big decisions before us in coming months. As Rev. Dr. William Barber, of the Poor People’s Campaign tweeted this week “This virus is teaching us that from now on, living wages, guaranteed health care for all unemployment and labor rights are not far left issues, but issues of right versus wrong,  and life verses death.”

Holy Week is the story of confrontation, begins with a parade.  It changed everything . . . it continues to change us Will we follow or just stand by?   Jesus says .. follow me, follow me in the ways of justice, love and mercy.

At times  lots of times there will be  donkey detail – paying attention to the thousands of small ways we continue to build the kingdom of God – praying for one another, calling each other in this time of physical distancing,  for the kids who have decorated their windows – spreading joy not germs; for those who are writing cards – thanks to Pamela Mittlefehldt for creating a card writing group at Peace, for those getting groceries for those who can’t get out – thanks to Mike Schrage this week who helped so much;  give thanks for our Gabriel fund that has allowed us to help so many people with groceries and other needs. And for those of you who continue to go to work each day – our essential workers – to all our dr, nurses—so many of you in our congregation, fire and police people, cna’s—like Matt Morris, postal carriers—like Susan K,  for those stocking shelves and checking us out; for our pharmacists– Mike and Joy; for Molly working with the resident’s of the Beehive and Ginny at Aftenro . .we see you making life so much better for those around you.

We are part of the fabric of this life . . . what part to do we play Margaret Farley  writes about what it means to her to be a follower of Jesus: “Christianity,” she writes, “is a religion of resistance and hope. The point of the cross is not finally suffering and death; it is, rather, that a relationship holds. There is a love stronger than death.”

We walk this path together but we are not alone —   Jesus walked into Jerusalem—cleansed a temple, shared a meal, withstood a sham trial, suffered and died,  but the journey did not end— hand in hand with God he walked right out of that tomb – We’re not bystanders to that either .. .   someday we shall fully know even as we are now fully known. We. walk on through it all together with our God. Amen.

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Song      Follow in These Footsteps” by Steve Horner 

Second Hymn

Follow in these Footsteps

by Steve Horner

Follow in these footsteps
Cast your burden down
Breathe like it’s your last breath
Pray without a sound
Offer up your best gift
Pass it all around
Follow in these footsteps
Walk on holy ground

Jump into the river
Feel the current’s pull
Let it overtake you
Let it make you full
When you reach the ocean
Big and wild and blue
Listen to the waves speak
Love is calling you

You are called my daughter
You are called my son
Come up through the water
Know that we are one
Offer up your best gift
Pass it all around
Follow in these footsteps
Walk on holy ground

Follow in these footsteps
Walk on holy ground

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We Respond to God’s Presence

Sharing Our Prayer Concerns, Silent Prayer, Pastoral Prayer, the Lord’s Prayer (with debts)

Sharing our Offerings

Give offering online
Please consider giving to the Gabriel Fund to support critical needs in our broader community 

Offertory        The Holy City”            sung by Mark Hakes 

The Thanksgiving    “We Give You but Your Own”   (#785) 
We give you but your own, whate’er the gift may be; 
All that we have is yours alone, we give it gratefully. 

Prayer of Dedication 
Loving God, as our Hosannas fade, may these gifts be used for peacemaking, justice and help that brings hope. 

Closing Hymn   The King of Glory”    (#9 P&W Songbook) 



Closing Hymn

The King of Glory

The King of glory comes, the nation rejoices.
Open the gates before him, lift up your voices.

Who is the King of Glory; how shall we call him?
He is Emmanuel, the promised of ages.

The King of glory comes, the nation rejoices.
Open the gates before him, lift up your voices.

In all of Galilee, in city or village,
he goes among his people, curing their illness.

The King of glory comes, the nation rejoices.
Open the gates before him, lift up your voices.

Sing then of David’s Son, our Savior and brother;
in all of Galilee was never another.

The King of glory comes, the nation rejoices.
Open the gates before him, lift up your voices.

He gave his life for us, the pledge of salvation,
he took upon himself the sins of the nation.

The King of glory comes, the nation rejoices.
Open the gates before him, lift up your voices.

He conquered sin and death; he truly has risen,
and he will share with us his heavenly vision.


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