We are a small Episcopal Church on the banks of the Rappahannock in Port Royal, Virginia. We acknowledge that we gather on the traditional land of the first people of Port Royal, the Nandtaughtacund, who are still here, and we honor with gratitude the land itself and the life of the Rappahannock Tribe. Our mission statement is to do God’s Will in all that we do.

The Lenten Gospel Readings

The Lenten Gospel Readings- the Path Ahead

Lent has five Sunday plus Palm Sunday.

Except for Lent 1, all of the Gospel readings come from the Gospel of John, specifically the second part Book of Signs (Jn 1.19-12.50).  Palm Sunday has its own readings.

The second Sunday through the fifth has Jesus confronting various characters – a educated Pharisee, a Samaritan Women, a blind man and a man recently deceased.  These texts from John are about revelation–the revelation of who Jesus is, the one sent by God, the begotten God, whose offer of life is in his presence and not necessarily delayed until his death.

The key is in the dialogues that the characters try to understand Jesus from their own backgrounds. Is he who he says he is ? How does he challenge Jewis teachings in the past ?

Along the way, it deals with man’s constant temptations and limits vs. Jesus as the source of light and eternal life.  Jesus does make himself known in a significant way.  It shows the power and glory of Christ and how humans confront it .

Are they going to find themselves within Christ ?  Ultimately, how are we finding our way through Christ ? Will we recognize him? Will we witness for him? Will we see him and worship him? Will we come when we hear him call our names? Will we move as these stories show from darkness to light, from insecurity to testimony, from blindness to sight, from death to life?  Here are the Sundays:

First Sunday of Lent: The Temptation of Jesus, following upon the account of Jesus’ own baptism, is a vivid reminder that our baptismal life is similar to Christ’s life: we will be subject to trial and temptation.

Second Sunday of Lent: The Story of Nicodemus , the Pharisee never understood the significance of Christ beyond the miracles despite his education. To stand accepted before God requires a conversion of one’s whole being. It requires being born from above, washed new by the Spirit of God.

Third Sunday of Lent: In the story of The Samaritan Woman the gradual enlightenment of the woman by Jesus is a pattern of baptismal grace that steadily purifies and enlightens us.

Fourth Sunday of Lent: The Man Born Blind shows the power of God offered to cure a helpless blind man. God’s power is no less evident in the sacrament of baptism.

Fifth Sunday of Lent: Raising of Lazarus is a powerful reminder that Christ is the “resurrection and the life” and those who believe in him will have eternal life.

Indeed the continual revelation of Jesus becomes a reason why the authorities conclude he is a dangerous man that needs to be dealt with in Holy Week.