March 21, 2021 • 5th Sunday of Lent

Parish or Diocesan Leaders, please read this!


Just Before You Begin


Opening Song


Leader: As the Lenten season begins coming to an end,
we gather to journey toward the Cross together,
along with all those in or world who are suffering.


Leader: ┼ In the name of the Father, and of the Son,
and of the Holy Spirit.

All: Amen.

Leader: 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.)

All: Blessed be God forever.

Leader: We gather together as a family
to learn how to live more like Jesus.
One with all of our sisters and brothers throughout the world,
let us now listen to God's Word and join in prayer.

All: Amen.

Penitential Rite

Leader: As we prepare to hear about God's love for us,
let us remember that the Lord always offers forgiveness,
for God is full of gentleness and compassion.
Lord Jesus, you came to teach us how to love each other better:
Lord, have mercy.

All: Lord, have mercy.

Leader: Lord Jesus, you bring us Good News in times of trouble:
Christ, have mercy.

All: Christ, have mercy.

Leader: Lord Jesus, you came to bring us life:
Lord, have mercy.

All: Lord, have mercy.

Opening Prayer

Leader: Let us pray

Leader: Heavenly Father,
you know what it's like to see your Son get hurt.
Give us courage, strength, and wisdom
to keep others from being hurt in our world.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

All: Amen.


All: Glory and praise to you, Word of life! Jesus! Jesus Christ!


Reader 1: In today's Gospel, Jesus talks about his coming Passion and death. We now do this action prayer together: May the Lord be on my mind, ┼
on my lips, ┼
and in my heart ┼
as we hear the Gospel today.
A reading from the holy Gospel of John.

Reader 1: Some Greeks had gone to Jerusalem to worship during Passover.
Philip from Bethsaida in Galilee was there too.
So they went to him and said, “Sir, we would like to meet Jesus.”
Philip told Andrew. Then the two of them went to Jesus and told him.
Jesus said:
The time has come for the Son of Man to be given his glory.
I tell you for certain that a grain of wheat that falls on the ground
will never be more than one grain unless it dies.
But if it dies, it will produce lots of wheat.
If you love your life, you will lose it.
If you give it up in this world, you will be given eternal life.
If you serve me, you must go with me.
My servants will be with me wherever I am.
If you serve me, my Father will honor you.
Now I am deeply troubled, and I don’t know what to say.
But I must not ask my Father to keep me from this time of suffering.
In fact, I came into the world to suffer.
So Father, bring glory to yourself.
A voice from heaven then said,
“I have already brought glory to myself, and I will do it again!”
When the crowd heard the voice, some of them thought it was thunder.
Others thought an angel had spoken to Jesus.
Then Jesus told the crowd,
“That voice spoke to help you, not me.
This world’s people are now being judged,
and the ruler of this world is already being thrown out!
If I am lifted up above the earth,
I will make everyone want to come to me.”
Jesus was talking about the way he would be put to death.

Reader 1: Some Greeks who had come to worship at the Passover Feast
came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee,
and asked him, “Sir, we would like to see Jesus.”
Philip went and told Andrew;
then Andrew and Philip went and told Jesus.
Jesus answered them,
“The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.
Amen, amen, I say to you,
unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies,
it remains just a grain of wheat;
but if it dies, it produces much fruit.
Whoever loves his life loses it,
and whoever hates his life in this world
will preserve it for eternal life.
Whoever serves me must follow me,
and where I am, there also will my servant be.
The Father will honor whoever serves me.
“I am troubled now. Yet what should I say?
‘Father, save me from this hour’?
But it was for this purpose that I came to this hour.
Father, glorify your name.”
Then a voice came from heaven,
“I have glorified it and will glorify it again.”
The crowd there heard it and said it was thunder;
but others said, “An angel has spoken to him.”
Jesus answered and said,
“This voice did not come for my sake but for yours.
Now is the time of judgment on this world;
now the ruler of this world will be driven out.
And when I am lifted up from the earth,
I will draw everyone to myself.”
He said this indicating the kind of death he would die.

Reader 1: The Gospel of the Lord.

All: Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.

Gospel Video Reflection

Coming soon.

Reflections on the Readings

  1. In this reading Jesus knows he is about to be killed because the rich and powerful leaders don’t like what he is teaching. Other great leaders since then such as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., St. Oscar Romero, and Mahatma Ghandi, have known they might be killed for speaking out against wrongdoing too. Do you think they should have kept speaking out if they knew their lives were in danger? Why or why not?
  2. Jesus compares his upcoming death to a grain/seed that must die before it can grow more fruit. Even though it was horrible that Jesus was killed, what good things came about that might not have if he hadn’t died?
  3. Jesus said he was “troubled” when he thought about how he was going to die. It reminds us that he was human just like us and that it’s normal to be scared or sad or lonely when something difficult is happening. Does it help you to know Jesus was scared sometimes? Why or why not?

General Intercessions

Leader: Now let’s pray together to God for what we need.

Reader 2: For people who cheat others,
that they can realize that what they are doing is wrong and make a change,
and for those that they cheat,
that they can find the help they need, let us pray to the Lord.

All: Lord, hear our prayer.

Reader 2: For those who do not have a warm and safe home,
that they can find the lodging that they need,
let us pray to the Lord.

All: Lord, hear our prayer.

Reader 2: For all students who are struggling to learn because of how school has changed,
and for teachers, staff, and administrators,
that they may work together for the good of all students,
let us pray to the Lord.

All: Lord, hear our prayer.

Reader 2: For what else and for who else shall we pray?

Lord's Prayer

Leader: Jesus taught us to call God our Father, and so we have the courage to say:

All: 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 trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us;
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.

Sign of Peace

Leader: Let us now offer each other a sign of peace.

A Litany for Spiritual Communion

Leader: The response is: Lord, bring us closer to you!

All: Lord, bring us closer to you!

Leader: Lord our God,
we wish we could gather today with our parish community,
but we gather here out of love and concern for others.
You teach us that when two or three are gathered in your name,
you are there.
Together, we pray:

All: Lord, bring us closer to you!

Leader: Christ Jesus, you are present in a special way
when bread and wine are turned into your Body and Blood.
Since we cannot receive you in this way today,
We ask that you enter our hearts
so that we may receive you spiritually.
Together, we pray:

All: Lord, bring us closer to you!

Leader: Lord our God,
watch over your family
and keep us safe in your care,
for all our hope is in you.

All: Lord, bring us closer to you!

Concluding Rite

Blessing & Dismissal

Leader: Go in the peace of Christ.

All: Thanks be to God.

Closing Song

After the Service

Give Us a Tip: Support Our Ministry

The Pastoral Center is a small, family-based ministry and business (pictured: Paul, Madeleine, Ann, and Rachel). This is our full-time job and ministry, and it's the way we pay our bills. We do not receive funding from any parish or diocese, except through resource sales (which are now largely suspended indefinitely). You are under no obligation, but we are very grateful for any contributions!

Please Support Your Local Parish

Your parish still has to pay the electric bill and your staff, even when public Masses are cancelled. If you haven't already, sign up for electronic payments or mail in a check today.

Give Us Feedback

How did it go? What would have made it better? Send us an email at resources@pastoralcenter.com to share feedback with us.