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Lent Week 3 - Living Water
Week 3: March 12, 2023
Third Sunday of Lent
Exodus 17:3-7; Psalm 95: 1-2,6-9; Romans 5:1-2, 5-8; John 4:5-42
The Gospel for this Sunday relates Jesus’ encounter with the Woman at the Well.
It is one of the longest dialogues recorded in Scripture. Jesus opened the conversation and drew her into understanding who he was and what the gift of belief would bring. He offered her a gift – living water. The woman was open to what Jesus said. She took it to heart and became a disciple.
She was a Samaritan woman, the lowest in the society. Even the pagans of that day hated Samaritans—she was truly an outcast!
The personal conversion of the woman and her enthusiastic testimony to the Samaritans are important, but even more critical was the message that Jesus sent to all by his interaction with her. He came for all people Jews and gentiles alike. Everyone is included in the reign of God - holy people and sinners, people of all cultures and nations.
In the Rite of Christian Initiation of adults, Lent coincides with the period of purification and enlightenment (discerning areas of sin and weakness and allowing those areas to be healed by Christ). It is a period of final preparation for the elect-those preparing for the sacraments of initiation at the Easter Vigil. Three scrutinies are celebrated with the elect beginning this Sunday. While these scrutinies are celebrated with the elect, they are also for the entire church. We are on the journey to wholeness and liberation together. The three scrutinies prepare the elect for the sacraments of initiation and they serve as preparation for our own recommitment to the baptismal promises we will profess anew at Easter.
Read this Sunday’s readings before you go to Mass. Reflect on a word or phrase in Scripture that is living water for you.
We all thirst for living water. The readings for today challenge us, like the woman of Samaria, to turn to the Lord to hear his word and acknowledge the sins and weaknesses that weigh us down. What is weighing you down right now? Celebrate the sacrament of reconciliation this week.
This week, spend some quiet time with the powerful scripture reading from John’s gospel. See yourself in the role of the woman. How would Jesus invite you into conversation? What would you say to him? In what ways are you changed by this encounter?
In what ways do you sit and encounter Jesus during the day?
Reflection on Living Water: ArtWay.eu