Fifth Sunday of Lent, Year C

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Lectionary: 36
Read Sunday’s Gospel: John 8:1-11

Gospel Summary

Although most scholars believe that this story of the woman caught in adultery was not part of John’s original writings, it is nevertheless an excellent example of Jesus’ style. First of all, some of the religious leaders tried to trick Jesus into going against the law of Moses by not having the woman stoned or going against the Roman law that did not allow the Jewish people to impose the death sentence. Again, Jesus seemed trapped, but drew in the sand with his finger until he presented his answer. In an effort to demonstrate the forgiveness God had for his people, Jesus challenged the Pharisees to throw a stone if they were without sin. Of course, none could throw a stone and slowly the crowed drifted away. When only the woman remained, Jesus showed mercy toward her and told her to resist further sin.

Reflection for Families

Of course we will never fully know what Jesus drew in the sand. Whether his drawing was with purpose or not has been lost to history and most likely would not change the story. An important lesson we can gain from his action is that he took the time to gather his thoughts before speaking. How often do we say the first thing that comes to mind and end up regretting it? Thinking first helps us present a Christ-like presence to others even if we are dealing with a serious conflict.

Bringing the Gospel into Your Family

Ask each family member to help create a list of “pet peeves” or annoying habits in others. Give each member a chance to consider the list and see if they claim ownership of any of the actions listed. Ask one another how this exercise is like the woman and the Pharisees in today’s Gospel. What will you do to “throw a stone” at the guilty person? What action can you take that resembles the action of Jesus? Pray for support to accomplish this action.

Discussion Starters

  1. I received a second chance that made a difference in my life when . . .
  2. One judgment I hold from the past still causes me pain. In order to let go if it, I need to . . .
  3. The person I most identify with in this Gospel story is . . . because . . .


Posted in: Gospel Reflections C