Holy woman, graceful giver,
prophet, servant, and believer,
woman with the ointment jar,
rose up near the time appointed,
broke the seal, Christ's head anointed
for the coming fatal hour.
These are the words we will sing Sunday as our Hymn of the Day. They were written by Lutheran poet and author Susan Palo Cherwien in 1994 to commemorate what was then the 25th anniversary of the Ordination of women in the Lutheran Church. They describe the scene where Jesus' feet were anointed with costly perfume.
Like the vessel, we are broken;
like the ointment, we are token
of God's loving unto death;
like the woman, we are serving;
like the scolders, ill deserving
such a rich, forgiving faith.
Six days before the Passover Jesus came to Bethany, the home of Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead. There they gave a dinner for him. Martha served, and Lazarus was one of those at the table with him. Mary took a pound of costly perfume made of pure nard, anointed Jesus' feet, and wiped them with her hair. The house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume. But Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples (the one who was about to betray him), said, Why was this perfume not sold for three hundred denarii and the money given to the poor? (He said this not because he cared about the poor, but because he was a thief; he kept the common purse and used to steal what was put into it.) Jesus said, "Leave her alone. She bought it so that she might keep it for the day of my burial. You always have the poor with you, but you do not always have me." John 12:1-8
In these jars is hidden treasure,
costly fragrance, Christly pleasure,
like the Christ, first from the dead,
broken for creation's wholeness,
poured out for its coming fullness,
Prophet, Servant, Hope, and Head.
From a 2015 article:
CHICAGO (ELCA) - On the 45th anniversary of the ordination of Lutheran women in the United States, "I give thanks for my sisters who were the first women pastors," said the Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton, presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). "I give thanks for all women in ministry. We are doing what Mary, the mother of our Lord, and Mary Magdalene did before us - proclaiming the gospel."
Eaton is the denomination's first female presiding bishop, elected in August 2013 by the ELCA Churchwide Assembly. She was ordained in 1981, 11 years after the first Lutheran woman, the Rev. Elizabeth A. Platz, was ordained Nov. 22, 1970, by the Lutheran Church in America, one of the ELCA's predecessor church bodies.
"Even as a young girl I felt called to service in the church, to word and sacrament ministry," said Eaton. "In the face of sometimes vehement opposition, I questioned it. My ordination was not a feminist statement but a response to an irresistible call from God to serve."...
Holy woman, costly treasure,
with the jar of alabaster,
shows the hidden gift we are;
therefore let us as Christ's servants
hold our sister in remembrance,
woman with the ointment jar.
This Sunday's Readings
Way of the Shepherd All-Church Conversation - Sundays during Lent, 9:30-10:30 am, Fellowship Hall - Each week, we will focus on a new topic, walking this Lenten faith journey together. All adults are encouraged to join the conversation.
Final Day for Easter Flowers
Today is the final day to order Easter flowers in honor or memory of a loved one. Complete an order form in the bulletin and drop it in the offering plate or Narthex mail slot.
Last Lenten Soup Supper & Vesper Worship - Wednesday, April 10
No need to cook dinner before you head to church on Wednesday. Let's share a simple meal together starting at 5:30 pm (drop in any time), and then worship at 7:00 pm.
Today is the final day to register for the Easter Egg Hunt!
Sunday, April 14, 9:30-10:30 am - All 2-year olds through 5th graders won't want to miss this chance to join friends for hunting Easter eggs, storytelling, preparing for Holy Week and a special snack! RSVP on Realm or to email@example.com.
Donate Candy for the Easter Egg Hunt - Individually wrapped candy with no nuts are greatly appreciated. Place in the bin in the Narthex.
Penny Wars & Wrist Band Sales Begin April 14!
Look under the couch cushions, in your car, and in your piggy banks! Save your pennies, nickels, dimes, quarters, and dollar bills to support the orphans of Mnene Parish. Penny jars will be located in the Narthex through the Kicknic on May 19. During this time, we will also be selling wristbands for $5 each to wear at the Kicknic, with all proceeds going to Mnene Outreach Ministry. Contact Cathie Strawbridge, 919-870-9439, with questions.
A great group of folks, including Pastor Tim, Pastor Marsha, and members of Good Shepherd, turned out to discuss affordable housing at the NC Synod Advocacy Day in Raleigh on Tuesday, March 26.
Health and Healing
Terry Malitz, friend of the Resovsky family; Norma Bates, mother of Wendy Liddick; Carolyn Remaklus; Dave Danielson, friend of Lois Walker; and Don Padley, cousin of Sue Ragone.
Thanksgiving for the 3rd - 5th graders who will be at BYG at Camp Agape this weekend and the Rams Men's Ministry Beach Retreat at Kure Beach this weekend.
Sympathy to Bruce Franck and family at the death of his father, Ronald Franck; and Paul Lester and family at the death of his father, Harold Lester.
For the Orphans of Mnene Parish
, including Tania Moyo and Godfree Hove.
Tania is 23. Her son Talent is now 2 1/2 years old. She is currently staying with her Grannie. She was doing very well in her Hairdressing classes and about to begin her attachment (Internship) when she left school. The Mnene staff are working with her to resume her training and complete her diploma. Her goal is to finish her diploma, secure employment and support herself and her son. Her Mail For Mnene partner is the Agather family.
Godfrey will be 18 next month and is living with relatives, away from Mnene. The Mnene staff are working to connect with him to learn how he is doing and if he is attending school. He is currently not in the GSLC support program but we continue to hold him in our prayers. His Mail For Mnene partner is the Alford family.
Visit the Wittenberg Information Center in the Narthex for photos of this week's orphans and more information on the Mnene Ministry.