LIVING WATER, HEAVENLY BREAD
3rd Week in Lent
RCIA Sessions for March 4 & 8
SUNDAY'S READINGS, Year A
Psalm 95:1-2, 6-7,8-9
Romans 5:1-2, 5-8
"This is my beloved Son. Listen to Him." -cf. Mark 9:2-10
"...But whoever drinks the water I shall give will never thirst; the water I shall give will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life. The woman said to him, 'Sir, give me this water...' ...The woman left her jar and went into town...Many of the Samaritans of that town began to believe in him because of the word of the woman...Many more came to believe in Him because of His word..." -cf. John 4:5-42
"The Israelites ate this manna for forty years, until they came to settled land; they ate manna until the reached the borders of Canaan." -cf. Exodus 16:1-35
CALENDAR: First Scrutiny - 7 pm, 10 am and 3 pm for all Elect (Catechumens)
- The FIRST SCRUTINY takes place after the Homily at the 7 pm, 10 am and 3 pm Masses this weekend, March 3 & 4. The Elect (those to receive Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist at the Easter Vigil) should come 15 to 30 minutes and check in before Mass. They come forward when the priest invites them to come forward right away without hesitation; no names will be called. The Elect gather around the bottom step of the Sanctuary with their Sponsors/Godparents or parents behind them. Many prayers will be prayed for the Elect and for the community as we await the Easter Sacraments.
- MARCH 3 RCIA RETREAT: For RCIA Families the Retreat will be 9:00 am to 12:30 pm on March 3 in the Cafeteria. For RCIA Adults the Retreat will 9 am to 5 pm in St. Augustine: bring the food you signed up to bring.
- RCIA Sessions on March 8 will begin in the normal rooms at the usual times. At 8:30 pm on March 8 the evening will conclude in Church with the minor rite, Presentation of the Creed.
- Don't forget to mark your calendars for the Easter Vigil practice on March 27 at 6:00 pm in English and 7:00 pm in Spanish - in the Church.
- Also, remember, whether you will be receiving Sacraments at the Easter Vigil or some time after, you are asked to gather and pray at 9:00 am in Church on the morning of the Easter Vigil, Holy Saturday, March 30 - this PRAYER is called the RITES OF PREPARATION.
- All receiving Sacraments at the Easter Vigil will need to come that evening, March 30, at 6:30 pm. Please be at the RCIA Sessions each week so that you have all the information you need to know what is happening each week, including at the Easter Vigil!
PRACTICE THE FAITH: Trust, Believe
- Continue the disciplines of Lent, even if you have faltered. If the discipline is weak, try to strengthen your commitments rather than quit them all.
USEFUL RESOURCES/PARISH EVENTS:
- Stations of the Cross - every Friday in Lent at 6:00 pm in the Church - by the Youth Group
- Weekly Confession Times in Lent
- Monday-Thursday: 6:00-7:00 pm
- Friday: 3:00-4:00 pm
- Saturday: 9:00-11:00 am & 3:00-5:00 pm
- Sunday: 7:00-8:00 am and 9:00-10:00 am and 11:30 am -12:30 pm and 2:00-3:00 pm and 5:00-6:00 pm
- Written "Guide" on how to go to Confession - whether it is your first or hundredth time.
- Two videos online about "how to go" to Confession: Confession 101, Part One & Confession 101, Part Two
- An online video about "how to" receive Communion
- CRS Lenten Resources for Families and all Believers: if you search this website you can find a Stations of the Cross, Weekly "stories of hope" from different countries, a Lenten Calendar of activities, a digital retreat, a phone app and more!
CONNECTIONS: Listen to Him, Trust Him
The woman in this Gospel comes to the well at noon because she wants to come when no one else is there. She is a woman in bad standing in her community - her life is not well "put-together" to say the least. Jewish men do not talk to women in public, because it makes them "unclean" - unable to participate in worship. Jewish people have nothing to do with Samaritans, because Samaritans had married non-Jews and tainted the purity of the Jewish people. Completely scandalous in three ways, Jesus nonetheless speaks to the woman at the well. As she stays in the conversation and gradually begins to open up and trust that Jesus means no harm, she is touched by his words, but even more by his willingness to be with her. Finally, she BELIEVES, and leaves her water jar to go and tell others about Jesus.
In this time of Lent, we do not read a Gospel in which a woman is touched by Jesus, gets her life together, and lives in peace forever after. We read a story about a woman who is touched gradually, and so deeply that she leaves behind what little she has, her jar, and goes immediately to tell others what she has found.
What about us? How have we been touched by God? What have we left behind? Where have we run to?
What kind of reactions might the woman have received when she told others about Jesus? Some believed because of her word, but others may have called her and her scandalous life into question rather than listen. Perhaps the man she lived with was less than happy about what she had to say.
What do you think happened to the woman in the years after this encounter with Jesus? Did she keep alive the memory of that touch? Did she continue to want to run out to tell others what she had found? Would her faith remain, grow? What would keep her faith alive through the rough times, the dry times, and all the other times of her life in the years after these first moments?
What about us? Will it be the same for us as it was for the woman at the well? What does this Gospel call you to today, right now?