This Sunday at CCM, we will begin the Scrutinies in preparation for our catechumens to become full members of the Church. The first Gospel of the scrutinies is the story of the woman at the well (John 4:3-32). In preparation for Sunday, Father Stephen Vaccaro, Parochial Vicar at The Church of the Nativity in Burke, wrote for us a reflection on Christ’s saving of the woman at the well and her resulting joy.
In Sunday’s gospel, we see Jesus interacting with the Samaritan woman. At first glance, it may seem that Jesus is lecturing this woman and that his demands for her life are too great: that she live according to the Law of God. But if we look a little deeper, we see that Christ is SAVING this woman. While He demands much from her, in the process of demanding, He is simultaneously revealing to her Eternal Life: He, Who is the way, is showing her the Way to H. And if we look how she responds to Jesus, at first she seems shocked. But by the end of the Gospel, we see the Samaritan woman starting to realize how much God is giving her. In joy and in gratitude she runs and shares the Good News with zeal and reckless abandon. For us, we are standing at that well alongside that Samaritan woman. Jesus comes to each one of us and calls us to live the glorious, yet demanding life, of Christian Saints. But as much as Christ demands, even more does He give: His very Self, the Grace of the Sacraments, and membership in His Holy Church. With Him in our life, we have everything: we can conquer sin, we can do the impossible, we can save the world with Him, we can become Saints! We, too, should be filled with joy and with gratitude for this great gift. And just like that Samaritan woman, filled with this joy and gratitude, we should run into the world and share this message of salvation to all we meet.
-Fr. Stephen Vaccaro