Palm Sunday – Two hymns, a poem and a monologue

Mark 11: 1-11

First the cheering, then the jeering 

First the cheering, then the jeering –
crowds can change their minds at will.
First they hail him, then condemn him;
aim to please, or aim to kill.

First the anger, then the whipping,
clearing out the Temple court.
First the traders, then the money –
space for prayer cannot be bought.

First the perfume, then the poison –
money should not go to waste.
First anointing, then annoyance –
do not judge her deed in haste.

First the trusting, then betrayal –
Judas seeking cash in hand.
First he loved him, then provoked him,
daring him to take a stand.

First the kneeling, then the serving,
showing deep humility.
First bread breaking, then wine sharing –
‘Do this as you think of me.’

First the garden, then the praying –
sweating blood, then traitor’s kiss.
First the trial, then denial –
Peter, has it come to this?

First the nails and then the hammer
piercing flesh and splitting bone.
First the sighing, then the dying –
Jesus on the cross, alone.

First the grieving, then the praying,
agonising through your death.
First we share your desolation -
while you wait to take new breath.

Marjorie Dobson © 2005 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England copyright@stainer.co.uk . Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd ©  Stainer & Bell Ltd
From Unravelling the Mysteries, Stainer & Bell Ltd., 2019
Tune: STUTTGART – Singing the Faith 225


Poem: Palm Sunday

Don’t know much about horses.
Don’t know much about donkeys for that matter.
Do know that colts can be nervous and jumpy.
Know they need to be trained for a rider.
Know they have to get used to noises.
Know they shy away from sudden movements.
Know they need careful handling by experienced riders.

So what was Jesus doing 
taking a young colt, 
never been ridden before, 
not familiar with strangers, 
let alone one who usually walked everywhere, 
into a crowd of people waving and shouting, 
throwing strange objects right into the path of the animal, 
and riding it on a public highway, 
through a darkened arched gate 
into crowded city streets, 
lined with excited and sometimes hostile figures?

Was he out to get himself killed?

He was certainly going the right way about it.

Marjorie Dobson - © 2019 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England copyright@stainer.co.uk . Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd ©  Stainer & Bell Ltd
From Unravelling the Mysteries, Stainer & Bell Ltd., 2019.

A strange kind of king 

When that king comes 
riding on a donkey, 
will he be noticed 
among the finery 
and glitz and glamour 
of a ceremonial 
state occasion?

When, through God’s peacemakers, 
arms and armoury 
are decommissioned 
and weapons of mass destruction 
are immobilised, 
will anyone believe 
that peace can be permanent, 
or that God 
can have anything to do with it?

When those imprisoned 
by warfare, neglect and poverty 
are freed into peace, 
hope and equality, 
will anyone credit God 
with being the inspiration 
behind many of the activists 
who helped to achieve those aims?

Or will the donkey 
wander through rejoicing crowds 
and the man on its back 
be taken for a fool 
again?

© Marjorie Dobson; May be used freely locally with acknowledgment, for wider use please contact the author.

To bring a city to its sense 

To bring a city to its sense,
a nation to its knees,
they welcomed Nazareth's carpenter,
waved palms cut from the trees.

Hosanna filled the quiet air,
they strained to glimpse a view;
'Messiah' they acclaimed this man
whom Pharisees would sue.

He turned the tables upside down,
he spun their world around,
he challenged preconceived ideas,
flung hatred to the ground.

This man had learnt too much, it seemed,
knew ways of right and wrong,
his ear attuned to righteousness
sensed discord in their song.

The politicians and the priests
were threatened by this choice;
the hypocrites would silence him,
and still we shun his voice.

Andrew E Pratt (born 1948)
© 2002 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England copyright@stainer.co.uk . Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd ©  Stainer & Bell Ltd.
From Whatever Name or Creed, Stainer & Bell Ltd., 2002.
Metre: CM
Tune: FINGAL (Anderson); FORGIVE OUR SINS





Amanda Udis-Kessler has produced two items, one for Palm Sunday, the other for Easter

A Palm Sunday Hymn – Two Processions, by Amanda Udis-Kessler.

An Easter Extravaganzer – Love had a dream, by Amanda Udis-Kessler.

Clicking the links will take you to YouTube to watch and hear her work. More information can be found at here.