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Bread and Broth for the Soul: Week 3

As we continue our journey through Lent, we use our senses to reflect on the events of Jesus’ life and death, also called the Passion, and once again we imagine gathering for Bread and Broth. We are invited to think on these weekly words and watch the video message on our website.

Smell (An Odor Pleasing to the Lord)
Touch (Who Touched Me)
Taste (Taste and See that the Lord is good)

Today we consider the gift of smell.
Imagine the scents and smells filling the church hallway and wafting around the Purple Room…
the blended aromas of tonight’s meal, the perfumes and colognes of all the participants,
the enticing smell of scented candles burning, the fresh hint of spring in the air.
Breathe in the prayer concerns of the church family; breathe out the prayers of our own hearts.
Perhaps Burt Crooks makes Mulligatawny soup, or Elaine Henschel makes Tortellini soup.
Perhaps Marilyn Rodearmel makes her corn bread, or Sarah Adams brings other breads.
We inhale the words of grace over the meal, exhale our gratitude for all who prepared it.

Think of the odors that might have risen from the table at the Last Supper…
unleavened bread and wine, bitter herbs and spices, sweetened dates and nuts.
Think of the aromas associated with the Garden of Gethsemane and the Hill at Golgotha…
the scent of trees and flowers, the stench of dust and decay, the smell of sorrow and fear.
Think of the pure ointment poured out over the head of Jesus…
the strong fragrance filling the house, the costly perfume condemned as wasteful,
the woman gently affirmed for such an extravagant gift of love…
her act of preparation for his burial, the gospel told everywhere in memory of her.
Which aromas are most pleasing to God? Which scents call us to deeper faith, greater action?

Eternal God, we thank you for the myriad signs of your creation
which we detect in our sense of smell.
May we relish those gifts which communicate their beauty
in a way that enhances them.
We give thanks for our enjoyment of flowers and gardens,
for the delight we sense in cooking.
We also ask that we do not turn
from the more unpleasant aspects of life
communicated through this sense.
May we use this gift to inform ourselves of what is about us,
and, where we can, to act to correct any decay.
We ask this through Jesus Christ, Our Lord. Amen.
(By Kevin Scully)