Mothering Sunday Challenge
Meanwhile, standing near the cross of Jesus were his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene.When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing beside her, he said to his mother, ‘Woman, here is your son.’Then he said to the disciple, ‘Here is your mother.’ And from that hour the disciple took her into his own home.John 19.25-27
The Gospel reading tells of the time when Jesus was dying on the cross. The pain he must have been experiencing would have been almost unbearable and yet, despite this and the anguish he was going through, he still managed to show love and concern for those standing at the foot of the cross watching him die. How often, in our busy lives, do we know of someone in need and think, “Oh, I must get in touch with so and so”, and yet we never respond to that thought? Here is an extraordinary example of responding to a perceived need. Jesus was aware that his mother would be alone, and would need looking after. He responded immediately, in spite of being in such agony, and asked his dear friend John to look after his mother. We often need to be reminded that we are all part of God’s family and if a family really works the members need to look out for one another. Just as Jesus did in the last moments of his life.
Ask the congregation to imagine that they are standing at the foot of the cross. The entire congregation is there, old and young, happy and sad.
Ask them to think whom it would be that Jesus would tell them they were linked to, whom they should be looking after, inviting home for a cup of tea, making friends with, or going to the pub with?
Who are their mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, aunts, uncles or friends?
Challenge them to respond to those thoughts during the second part of Lent.
On Easter Day ask anyone who would like to, to tell the congregation what came from that challenge and what new links have been forged.