There are a few things you need to do to get ready before you begin.

  • We recommend glancing through the whole service before you start. Adapt the service for your family however you would like, especially so it will be age-appropriate.
  • Make the setting special by using a table cloth (red is the official color for the service) and set some candles out, if possible. Get the whole family involved in the preparations.
  • Have everyone in your family wear red.
  • Kids love processions and parades. Usually we raise up palm branches at this service, but let your kids go outside and gather up fallen branches if there are any around or allow them to rummage around the house for any pole-like or stick-like object that can be used to wave like a banner (ex: brooms, drumsticks, etc.). Let them attach scarves, bandanas, or ribbons as decoration.
  • Place your family Bible on the table, if you have one, opened up to the Gospel reading of the day (Matthew 26:14-27:66).
  • The script has leader and various reader parts. Anyone old enough to read well can perform these roles.
  • An iPad/tablet computer or large phone could work well for reading the script. It would would be helpful to have two devices so you can display the gospel slide show and/or for multiple people to read the parts of the Gospel reading.
  • Don’t worry, you don’t have to do this perfectly. Have some fun with it. Let’s pray!

Just Before You Begin

  • Silence and set aside all phones or other devices that may interrupt you.


Gather for the Procession

Most parishes begin Palm Sunday services outside of the normal gathering space (usually outside or in the vestibule) and process in after the reading. So do that as a family, if possible. Pick a spot to begin, just outside or in a separate room.



In the name of the Father, and of the Son,
and of the Holy Spirit.




Grace and peace to you from God our Father
and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
Blessed be God forever.
The response is: Blessed be God forever.


Blessed be God forever.


We have been getting ready for five weeks of Lent
for this week’s celebration.

Today we start this celebration,
together with the whole Church all over the world.
Christ came to his city to suffer, die, and rise again,
so we remember this entry and follow him.

Let us pray.

Pause briefly for silent prayer.


We now raise our branches high.

Lord, make our faith stronger and listen to our prayers. Today we honor Christ our King by carrying these branches. May we honor you every day by living always in him, for he is Lord forever and ever.



Gospel at the Procession

Reader 1:

Jesus knew what would happen when he went to Jerusalem.
In this Gospel reading, Jesus is greeted eagerly by the crowds,
though in a few days many in the same crowd will deny him by shouting, “Crucify him, crucify him.”

A reading from the holy Gospel of Matthew.

If you’d like to read the Gospel as a group, click on the “Parts” tab. Or read out of your own Bible (Matthew 21:1-11).

If at all possible, play the slideshow (just below the text) on another screen while reading. The highlighted numbers in the text correspond to the slide numbers.

  • Single Reader
  • Parts
  • NAB

This text is based on the translation used in the Lectionary for Masses with Children and is easier for young people to understand.

Reader 1:

[1] Jesus and his disciples entered the walled city of Jerusalem.
Jesus said to two of his disciples:

[2] “Go ahead of us to the next village. There will be a young donkey there who has never been ridden.
Untie the donkey and bring it here.
[3] If anyone asks why you are doing that, tell them, ‘The Lord needs it.'”

[4] The two disciples went ahead of the others and [5] found the donkey, just as Jesus said.
[6] Its owners asked: “Why are you doing that?”
They answered, “The Lord needs it.”

[7] They untied it, took it to Jesus, [8] and helped him get on.
[9] And as he rode along, the people spread clothes on the road in front of him.

[10] Jesus rode on the donkey while the disciples followed close by on the parade route.

[11] The large crowd shouted,
“Hosanna! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!”
[12] “Hosanna! Praise God in heaven!”
[13] “Hosanna! Blessed is the Son of David!”

[14] A Pharisee standing nearby was disgusted at what was taking place.
He said, “Jesus! Tell the crowd to be quiet.”

[15] But Jesus answered, “Even if they were to be quiet, the rocks and stones would sing out!”

Matthew 21:1-11 / Mark 11:1-10 / Luke 19:29-40. Excerpted and adapted from I Want to Be Jesus: Easy-to-Use Scripts for the Sunday Gospels © 1999 Carol Camp Twork. All rights reserved. Published by The Pastoral Center / Scripture quotations are paraphrased from the Contemporary English Version, © American Bible Society, 1991, 1995.

Reader 1:

The Gospel of the Lord.


Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.

Gospel Slideshow

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Gospel Illustration


Once you start playing, click the full-screen icons 

Opening Song & Procession Sing along to the refrain of this song while processing to your main worship space. Crank up the volume! Let the children lead everyone in the family through the house waving their “palms” or banners.

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