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Children's Liturgy Series: Palm Sunday (Cycle B)

Children's Liturgy Series: Palm Sunday (Cycle B)

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Author: Joyce Bott
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Weekly Sunday School lesson compilation brought to you by the Children's Ministry at Star of the Sea Catholic Church.

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Introduction

In today's Gospel, we learn about Jesus' passion, how he suffered out of love for us, and how the centurion who witnessed His death, became a believer.

Opening Prayer

Holy Spirit, fill my heart and illuminate my mind. Help me to hear and understand God's message today. Help me to recognise when God is trying to speak to me in my daily life. Amen

Gospel (Mark 14:1-!5:47)

As soon as morning came, the chief priests with the elders and the scribes, that is, the whole Sanhedrin held a council. They bound Jesus, led him away, and handed him over to Pilate.Pilate questioned him, “Are you the king of the Jews?”He said to him in reply, “You say so.” The chief priests accused him of many things. Again Pilate questioned him,“Have you no answer? See how many things they accuse you of.” Jesus gave him no further answer, so that Pilate was amazed.

Now on the occasion of the feast he used to release to them one prisoner whom they requested.  man called Barabbas was then in prison along with the rebels who had committed murder in a rebellion. The crowd came forward and began to ask him to do for them as he was accustomed. Pilate answered, “Do you want me to release to you the king of the Jews?” For he knew that it was out of envy that the chief priests had handed him over. But the chief priests stirred up the crowd to have him release Barabbas for them instead. Pilate again said to them in reply, “Then what do you want me to do with the man you call the king of the Jews?” They shouted again, “Crucify him.” Pilate said to them, “Why? What evil has he done?” They only shouted the louder, “Crucify him.” So Pilate, wishing to satisfy the crowd, released Barabbas to them and, after he had Jesus scourged, handed him over to be crucified.

The soldiers led him away inside the palace, that is, the praetorium, and assembled the whole cohort. They clothed him in purple and, weaving a crown of thorns, placed it on him.They began to salute him with, “Hail, King of the Jews!” and kept striking his head with a reed and spitting upon him. They knelt before him in homage. And when they had mocked him, they stripped him of the purple cloak, dressed him in his own clothes, and led him out to crucify him.

They pressed into service a passer-by, Simon,a Cyrenian, who was coming in from the country, the father of Alexander and Rufus, to carry his cross.

They brought him to the place of Golgotha—which is translated Place of the Skull —They gave him wine drugged with myrrh, but he did not take it. Then they crucified him and divided his garments by casting lots for them to see what each should take. It was nine o’clock in the morning when they crucified him. The inscription of the charge against him read,“The King of the Jews.” With him they crucified two revolutionaries, one on his right and one on his left. Those passing by reviled him, shaking their heads and saying, “Aha! You who would destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save yourself by coming down from the cross.” Likewise the chief priests, with the scribes, mocked him among themselves and said, “He saved others; he cannot save himself. Let the Christ, the King of Israel, come down now from the cross that we may see and believe.” Those who were crucified with him also kept abusing him.

At noon darkness came over the whole landuntil three in the afternoon. And at three o’clock Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?” which is translated, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” Some of the bystanders who heard it said, “Look, he is calling Elijah.” One of them ran, soaked a sponge with wine, put it on a reed and gave it to him to drink saying, “Wait, let us see if Elijah comes to take him down.” Jesus gave a loud cry and breathed his last.

(Here all kneel and pause for a short time)

The veil of the sanctuary was torn in two from top to bottom. When the centurion who stood facing him saw how he breathed his last he said, “Truly this man was the Son of God!”

Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NzeHC5XO8Ug (Credit to Catholic Kids Media)

Reflection

Say: This week we celebrate Holy Week, which is the most important week in the Church year because it is when we remember Jesus’ death on the cross for our salvation. On Palm Sunday, we hear two Gospel readings. The first Gospel tells us how Jesus rode into Jerusalem and was greeted by the crowds. The crowds shouted praises to God because they thought Jesus was coming to save them.

Say:
In the second Gospel reading for this Sunday, which is also called Passion Sunday, we hear the details about several events: Jesus’ Last Supper, his prayer in the garden of Gethsemane, Judas’s betrayal, the arrest of Jesus, Peter’s denial of Jesus, and how Jesus was accused and sentenced to death. This year we read the passion from Mark’s Gospel. 

Say:
When we hear this Gospel, we discover that Jesus was alone when he died on the cross. Before he died, Jesus cried out to God, asking why God had abandoned him. Jesus felt completely abandoned and alone as he died on the cross. But the Gospel also tells us that some were looking on from the distance—Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of the younger James and of Joses, Salome, and many other women.

Say:
In dying alone on the cross, Jesus identifies himself with all those who are forgotten and alone in our world. Jesus wants us to bring his good news to those who feel alone. The women who looked on from a distance had ministered to Jesus as he traveled throughout Galilee. They felt helpless in the face of Jesus’ Crucifixion, but they were there.

Say:
God appeared to be absent when Jesus died on the cross, but we know that he wasn’t. By raising Jesus from the dead, God was saying to all of those who are forgotten and alone in the world that he cares for them.

Conclude by praying for those who feel alone and abandoned. Ask God to help our Church to reach out to all people, comforting them with the assurance of his care and love. Pray together the Peace Prayer of Saint Francis or sing the hymn “Were You There When They Crucified My Lord?”

Kids Bulletin

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Closing Prayer

Father in heaven, for the conversion of sinners, we give you today, all that we think and do and say, and we join it with all that was done by Jesus Christ, your Son. Amen