REFLECTION: Clueless preaching about the Samaritan woman misses the point

schenkby Christine Schenk, NCR

Last Sunday the Gospel about Jesus and the Samaritan woman (John 4:5-42) was proclaimed at my parish. (We used the reading from Year A since we have six people entering the church. Other parishes may have used the Year C Gospel, Luke 13:1-9).

SamaritanWomanAtTheWell-HeQiThis reading overflows with good news that “true worship” is not found in any building or cult but in the hearts of believers who worship God “in Spirit and in Truth.”

Sadly, clueless preachers frequently turn this Gospel into bad news, especially for women.

Rather than highlight the Samaritan woman’s inspired missionary leadership, preachers too often rant that she was a five-time divorcee before Jesus saved her from a dissolute life of sin.

This is so wrong on so many levels it’s hard to know where to begin...

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