Saturday, May 1, 2010

Sunday of the Samaritan Woman

Tomorrow, the fifth Sunday of Pascha, is the Sunday of the Samaritan Woman. Here is how S. V. Bulgakov explains this commemoration:
On the fifth Sunday we commemorate the conversation of Jesus Christ with the Samaritan Woman (see March 20 for more about her). This event, occurring during Jewish Pentecost, commemorates the revelation of an obvious witness of the Divine glory of the resurrected Savior on the present Sunday, for after the conversation with the Lord the Samaritan woman and her community of Samaritans were convinced that the one who converses is truly the Savior of the world, the Messiah (John 4: 41-42). Parts of the specified conversation, serving as the subject of the Gospel reading, are commemorated in the troparia of the Canon and the stichera of Matins of the present Sunday. That is why this Sunday is also called the Sunday of the Samaritan Woman. The Holy Church presents the Samaritan woman as an example of the raising up of sinful sinners from the depths, those who are looking for salvation and are ready to respond to the voice of God, who everywhere unceasingly calls out to them about raising up spiritually. The Samaritan woman, despite "burning with the heat of many passions", did not extinguish the feeling of goodness in her heart, the susceptibility to truth and the desire to please God, and for this she was made worthy to find the Savior, "sitting on the well". "Although He truly desires to free the woman from the snares of the enemy and for her to drink living water", the Savior made the Samaritan woman worthy of a conversation with Him. And during this conversation He, having stirred up sincere repentance of sins in her, reminded this woman about her sinful life. He caused her to understand by herself His elevated teaching about the "water of salvation" and caused a flaming desire in her heart "to accept the living water pouring out from Him". "Having drank it", the Samaritan woman "preached to all" about Christ, "who came in the flesh, to save mankind". With all of this we also are inspired that Lord Himself always goes out to meet those searching for divine truth and grace and are capable of repentance, and mercifully grants them gifts even to establish their salvation, and through them the salvation of others also. Besides this, announcing to us in the Sunday Gospel reading which posited the Savior's teaching about the worship of God in spirit and truth (John 4:23-24) in His conversation with the Samaritan woman, the Holy Church teaches that we should pray to God in order that our prayer will be pleasing to Him and will be redemptive for us.
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1 comment:

Pr Seraphim said...

Your blog is my absolute favorite. Despite your recent post about how the internet has dumbed us down (which I cannot disagree with entirely), I find that more often than not, I read the entirety of your posts with interest and am greatly edified. You are also a great source for icons, which I use in “Redeeming the Time” posts.

One small thing. All our sermons are available at

The source you cite is often out of date. I have the great blessing to have a volunteer who is transcribing homilies, so the list is getting bigger right now.

There is a direct link for all homily “categories”. For example, an up to date list of all homilies on the Samaritan woman on our site is at:

Your blog must be popular - I sure hope it is, since it is in the top 1%. Because of this, I hope that it is okay to mention that we are building a temple, and are ready to occupy, but way behind in expenses. We are a small church, and fill an important need in the DFW area. We are in need of about $40,000. I am not sure what the future will bring. Perhaps this is the post that will attract a benefactor, and "angel" for us. We pray PERPETUALLY for all our benefactors and their families. Please contact me, anyone, who may want to be a founding benefactor for an Orthodox temple.