First Congregational Church
(United Church of Christ)
Greg Briggs,
Interim Pastor

101 State Street
Charlevoix, MI 49720

Palm Sunday – Digital Worship Bulletin – April 5, 2020

Sunday April 5, 2020

Palm Sunday

Communion Sunday

Welcome to First Congregational, United Church of Christ in Charlevoix’s online worship experience. Though we are separated physically for one another’s physical health, we still join together to worship God, be inspired, and care for our mental, emotional, and spiritual health.

You are invited to find a comfortable place in your house and set aside a time for worship and prayer. This could be your usual Sunday morning time, or at sunset. Light a candle if you wish, or get a cup of tea.

Take your time as you read, listen, watch, sing, pray, and share in this worship of God.  Whether you worshiping on Sunday morning or whenever you have time, we are glad you are a part of our community.

As always, we want your feedback on how we can worship better with you in this time of physical distancing.  Feel free to give feedback and suggestions to  Ok, let us begin!

Welcome – Rev. Greg Briggs

Palm Sunday Coloring Sheet


Introit – All Glory, Laud, and Honor


Call To Worship – Mindi Welton Mitchell

read aloud. If you are worshiping with someone else, alternate readings.

O give thanks to the Lord, for God is good,
God’s steadfast love endures forever.
Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord
We bless you from the house of the Lord.
The Lord is our God, and God has given us light.
You are my God, and I will give thanks to You.
You are my God, and I will extol you.
O give thanks to the Lord, for God is good,
God’s steadfast love endures forever.

Opening Hymn – “Throughout These Lenten Days and Nights”


Prayer of the Day – Mindi Welton-Mitchell

Hosanna! Save us, O God.
Save us from temptation.
Save us from our tempers, our short fuses and bad moods.
Save us from despair. Save us from hopelessness.
Hosanna! Save us, O God.
Save us from giving up.
Save us from not planning ahead.
Save us from worry.
Save us from fear.
Hosanna! Save us, O God.
Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord.
Blessed are you, Lord Jesus, who came into our world as one of us, who died as one of us, and who lives again.
May we seek Your reign on earth as it is in heaven.
Hosanna in the Highest! Amen.



Gospel Reading – Matthew 21:1-11

When they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus gave two disciples a task. He said to them, “Go into the village over there. As soon as you enter, you will find a donkey tied up and a colt with it. Untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says anything to you, say that their master needs them.” He sent them off right away. Now this happened to fulfill what the prophet said, Say to Daughter Zion, “Look, your king is coming to you, humble and riding on a donkey, and on a colt the donkey’s offspring. The disciples went and did just as Jesus had ordered them. They brought the donkey and the colt and laid their clothes on them. Then he sat on them.

Now a large crowd spread their clothes on the road. Others cut palm branches off the trees and spread them on the road. The crowds in front of him and behind him shouted,

Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessings on the one who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!” 

[“Yes, save us, Son of David! Blessings on the one who comes to us in the Lord’s name. The one who saves us is the greatest!”]

And when Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred up. “Who is this?” they asked. The crowds answered, “It’s the prophet Jesus from Nazareth in Galilee.”

(CEB Translation)



Song referenced in Sermon “Tonight Tonight” by Smashing Pumpkins


Hymn – “Down to the River To Pray” 


Children of God,

In this time of change and uncertainty, we all are realizing what is truly important and vital in our lives.  We are also recognizing how many blessings we have that we have previously taken for granted. These things are both to be treasured and to be offered up to God.

We hope and pray that your faith community is one of those things that is truly vital and necessary in your lives. Though we may not be physically together, the ministry of the church goes on and needs your support. Please remember to keep current with your pledges and offerings. Also remember that we are currently participating in the One Great Hour of Sharing, which provides disaster relief across our country and around the globe.

You can mail your donations into the church, and you can also give online by clicking here: Donate to the church



Lenten Prayer : “You were there, you are here” by Katherine Kussmaul

Creator of Palms and Presence in Passion, you were there.

You were there for the triumphant entry –
riding a donkey and colt
(untied for sacred purpose)
on a road
covered with cloaks
padded with palms.

You were there to battle injustice –
ejecting merchants
overturning tables
toppling benches
rejecting the den of robbers
ensuring a house of prayer.

You were there to witness generosity –
the rich giving much
(a pittance from their abundance)
the widow giving all
(everything she had)
teaching discipleship.

You were there in a new commandment –
“Love one another –
Just as I have loved you,
you also should love one another”
Love the Lord your God with all…
Love one another as you hope to be loved.

You were there to forgive –
two who did not know
many who did know
Praying on their behalf
on our behalf
grace upon grace upon grace.

Creator of Palms and Presence in Passion, you are here.

Entering our lives in unexpected ways –
exposing injustice
welcoming generosity
fostering love
widening grace
inviting discipleship.

Entering our lives in more familiar ways –
companionship in isolation
spoken word in silence
laughter in restless longing
quiet in constant murmur
nourishment for every hour.

Entering our lives as you entered Jerusalem –
humble leader
adamant prophet
quiet observer
thoughtful teacher
steadfast servant.

Creator of Palms and Presence in Passion, you were there – you are here.

Grant us what we need
that we may receive what you offer
and share what you give.

submitted by 

Prayers of the People:  – Thom Shuman

When we are so weary we cannot seem to put one foot in front of the other, 
Steadfast Love, you take us by the hand, so we can join you on a morning walk to hear the songbirds.
When we would rather stuff our ears with cotton than listen to one more whine, one more argument,
Word of hope for all, you teach us how to listen to the hearts which are ignored by everyone, everywhere.
When we long to run away from all the worries, the fears, the insults flung in our faces,
Peace of the weary, you model for us how to be willing to care for those who suffer injustices which we cannot begin to imagine.
Steadfast Love, Word of hope, Spirit of peace,
God in Community, Holy in One,
hear us as we lift our prayer to you,
Our Father who art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy name.
Thy kingdom come.
Thy will be done
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our debts,
as we forgive our debtors,
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil
For thine is the kingdom,
and the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever.

Join us this Sunday, 4/5, on Zoom at 11 am to celebrate communion together.

And join us every Sunday on the church’s Zoom channel for prayers of the people and virtual coffee hour. Check your email for instructions for zoom, or email We are not posting the link publicly to discourage zoom crashers. Yes, that is now a thing. 


Go from this time of worship, knowing God has always loved you, loves you now, and will always love you. No matter what.