Hymns for Palm Sunday / Passion Sunday / 6th Sunday of Lent, Year B (24 March 2024), Catholic lectionary

A selection of hymns and songs, based on themes from the Roman Catholic lectionary for Palm Sunday / Passion Sunday - which is also the 6th Sunday of Lent - in Year B .

Most are free-to-use (ie public domain or copyright-free) meaning the words can be copied and sung to at least one tune with no concerns about copyright or performance licensing. Many such hymns are old/traditional - but where possible a variety of styles / genres are included.

A small selection of hymns which are, or may be, still copyright are also included where they are a particularly good for for the theme(s).


Psalm blessing and procession readings

Mark 11:1-10 - Jesus sends two disciples ahead to get the tethered colt that no one has yet ridden, because "The Master needs it and will send it back here directly".   Jesus rides it, on roads covered with cloaks and greenery from the fields, with the people shouting "Hosanna!   Blessings on him who comes in the name of the Lord."


John 12:12-16 - The crowds heard Jesus was coming, they took branches of palm and went out to meet him.   Jesus found a young donkey and mounted it, as scripture said.

Psalm 23:   The Lord's is the earth and its fullness / Who shall climb the mountain of the Lord / He shall receive blessings from the Lord / O gates, lift high your heads.

Psalm 46:  All people clap your hands / He subdues peoples under us / God goes up with shouts of joy / God is king of all the earth / The princes of the people are assembled.

Mass readings

First: Isaiah 50:4-7 - The Lord has given me a disciples tongue ... I offered my back to those who struck me.

Psalm: 21 - My God, why have you forsaken me / All who see me deride me / Dogs have surrounded me / They divided my clothing among them.

Second: Philippians 2:6-11 -His state was divine yet Christ Jesus  ... was humbler yet, even to accepting death on a cross.  But God raised him high.

Gospel: Mark 14:1 - 15:47 - The Passion, from two days before the Passover when the chief priests were plotting to kill Jesus, and Jesus dining with Simon the leper and being anointed with ointment.  Jusas approaches the chief priests ... through to Joseph of Arimathaea putting the body into a tomb and rolling a stone against the entrance.


The paradox:  acclaiming Jesus as king, and one week later putting him to death.

Note:  Although the readings cover the full passion story, most of the emphasis in the following list is on Jesus triumphant entrance acclaimed as a king.   See the subsequent days suggestions for more penitential / suffering themes hymns.


See lectionary art for this Sunday for suggested pictures and art-works based on today's readings.

Free-use hymns

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