Lent Five, Year C

Musical Reflection

Smells Like Teen Spirit (Acoustic) by Tori Amos



Extravagant God,
lavishing your love
on our poverty of heart:
inspire us to give without stint,
to lose life
that we might find it again,
so the world will be filled
with the fragrance of your love;
through Jesus Christ, who offers himself for us.

First Reading

by Edmond Jabès
translated by Rosmarie Waldrop

To the remote sources of life and death revealed.
To the dust of the well.
To the rabbi-poets in whose mouths I put my words and whose
names have, over the centuries, become mine.
To Sarah and Yukel.
To those, finally, whose roads of ink and blood go through
words and men.
And, most of all, to you. To us. To you.


Second Reading
Remembrance of Strange Hospitality
by Elena Shvarts
translated by Michael Molnar and Catriona Kelly

Once I had a taste
Of a girlfriend’s milk,
My sister’s milk–
Not to quench my thirst
But to satisfy my soul.
Into a cup she squeezed
Milk from her left breast
And in that simple vessel
It gently frothed, rejoiced.
There was something birdlike in its odor,
Whiffs of sheep and wolf, and something older
Than the Milky Way, it was
Somehow warm and dense.
A daughter in the wilderness,
Once let her aged father drink
From her breasts and thus became
His mother. By this act of grace
Her whiteness drove away the dark,
A cradle substituted for a tomb
From the duct next to your heart
You offered me a drink–
I’m not a vampire, am I?–Horror.
It frothed and tinkled, warm
And sweet, soft, everlasting,
Crowding time back in a corner.


Gospel Reading
John 12:1-8

Six days before Passover, Jesus came to Bethany, home of Lazarus, whom Jesus had raised from the dead. Lazarus and his sisters hosted a dinner for him. Martha served and Lazarus was among those who joined him at the table. Then Mary took an extraordinary amount, almost three-quarters of a pound, of very expensive perfume made of pure nard. She anointed Jesus’s feet with it, then wiped his feet dry with her hair. The house was filled with the aroma of the perfume. Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples (the one who was about to betray him), complained,“This perfume was worth a year’s wages! Why wasn’t it sold and the money given to the poor?” (He said this not because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief. He carried the money bag and would take what was in it.)

Then Jesus said, “Leave her alone. This perfume was to be used in preparation for my burial, and this is how she has used it. You will always have the poor among you, but you won’t always have me.”


Musical Reflection
I Love You Money by Lowell

by Dag Hammarskjöld

Give us a pure heart that we may see you,
A humble heart that we may hear you,
A heart of love that we may serve you,
A heart of faith that we may abide in you.

The Lord’s Prayer

O Parent of the Universe,
manifesting thyself as generative energy,
Bend over us and remove
all that clutters our being
and set apart a place
where thy sacredness may dwell.
Fill us with thy creativity,
so that we may be empowered to bear
the fruit of thy vision.
Then, moving to the heartbeat of thy desire,
make us the embodiment of thy compassion.
Drawing from the ground of our humanity
grant that we may renew each other
with love, understanding, and sustenance.
Empty us of frustrated hopes and despair,
as we restore others to a renewal of vision.
And let us not fall into agitation,
but save us from precipitous actions.
For thou art the ground
of the fruitful vision, the birthing-power, and the fulfilment,
as all is gathered and made whole once again. Ameyn.

Musical Reflection
Dark Come Soon by Tegan and Sara


Bless to us, O God,
the doors we open,
the thresholds we cross,
the roads that lie before us.
Go with us as we go
and welcome us home.

May the blessing of God – the One From Whom, the One Through Whom,
and the One in Whom We Offer Our Praise
be with us and remain with us always. Amen.



Artwork by Edward Burtynsky

Invocation from Prayers for an Inclusive Church by Steven Shakespeare

Musical Reflection Smells Like Teen Spirit by Tori Amos

Poem Dedication by Edmond Jabès

Poem Remembrance of Strange Hospitality by Elena Shvarts

Musical Reflection I Love You Money by Lowell

Prayer by Dag Hammarskjöld

Aramaic Lord’s Prayer by Mark Hathaway

Musical Reflection Dark Come Soon by Tegan and Sara

Blessing from The Pattern of our Days

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