Malankara World Journal - Christian Spirituality from an Orthodox Perspective
Malankara World Journal
Great Lent Week 5, Women in Jesus' Ministry
Volume 6 No. 335 March 4, 2016
We are now in the week 5 (of 7) of the Great Lent. The Mid Lent and the Exaltation of the Cross is history. We are now on an accelerated pace to the finish line. After this Sunday, there is only one more Sunday before the 40th day of Lent. Then it is the Passion Week from Palm Sunday ending in the resurrection or Easter.

What most people do not realize is that the Gospels cover only a small part of the life of Jesus. Jesus was 30 or 31 when he started his Public Ministry. Luke spends 3 chapters in describing in detail the infant narratives of Jesus Christ. John completely ignores the boyhood days of Jesus. Matthew spends 3 chapters on Jesus' childhood days and John the Baptist's ministry. Mark skips the infant days completely and start at the Baptism. So, the Gospels mainly deal with the 2 or 3 years of Jesus' public ministry. But in reality, 90% of the Gospels cover Jesus' last few months! We are covering a whole range of events that happened to Jesus in his last days in a very short period of time. It is a big challenge.

Logistically speaking, we will have a special edition for the 40th Friday and Lazarus Saturday; than one issue to cover the Palm Sunday; one on Maundy Thursday; one on Good Friday and Holy Saturday and end with the regular edition that will be a special on Easter. From then we will resume the weekly format for MWJ.

The meditations for Passion Week will try to cover what happened to Jesus on those days. The lenten reflections on "In His Steps" will continue and finish on Easter Sunday.

In this edition of MWJ, we feature 4 women who played important roles in the ministry of Jesus. The society, at the time of Jesus, was very discriminatory and prejudicial against women. They were treated as slaves. Jesus comes to this world and treats women with respect. That was absolutely unthinkable at that time. We hope that the articles on the women will shed more light into the role played by Christianity in raising the stature of women. You can then go to MWJ special supplement on women (Issue 121) to learn more; this issue of MWJ still remains a classic.

Dr. Jacob Mathew
Malankara World


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