3rd Sunday in Lent Year A

Published on 13 Mar 2017
Sculpture of Jesus and the Samaritan woman at Chester Cathedral - part of a fountain, Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

O God, author of every mercy and of all goodness, who in fasting, prayer and almsgiving have shown us a remedy for sin, look graciously on this confession of our lowliness that we, who are bowed down by our conscience, may always be lifted up by your mercy.

I shall be standing before you there.

First Reading Exodus 17:5

Listen to his voice … Harden not your hearts

Psalm 94

The love of God has been poured into our hearts

Second Reading Romans 5:5

Anyone who drinks the water that I shall give will never be thirsty again.

Gospel John 4: 5-42

The woman is hiding from others – she goes to the well alone when no one else would be there – from herself, from the truth about herself. The woman is thirsting – for water – and also for meaning in her life. Jesus – hot, tired and thirsty – meets her; accepts her; patiently leads her to look at her real needs – her real thirst. I ask to be led into the deeper meaning of this event as I slowly read the gospel, perhaps read it several times. As I try to imagine the scene (maybe at the end of a long day for me), I may identify with the feelings of tiredness and thirsting. I pay attention to the dialogue. What is the tone of Jesus’ voice? What awakens in me as Jesus looks at me and speaks to me in my tiredness, in my seeking or thirsting…What would I like him to offer me? I wait before him – trusting.


Often my needs and desires are confused. I want happiness and look in the wrong places. Lord, help me to stay close to you, to accept the Living Water you offer me, so that strengthened by this Holy Spirit I may be a channel of your love and peace to others.