March 13th, 2022 – “Jesus as Mother Hen”

Mother hen mosaic
2022-03-13 Sunday Worship 11:00 AM - "Jesus as Mother Hen"

Dear all,

Tomorrow, March 13 is the second Sunday in Lent – and also the beginning of Daylight Saving Time.Our clocks will move forward an hour during the wee hours of March 13. In other words, we will lose an hour. However, our worship service will start at the usual time of 11 a.m.!

We will celebrate Communion next week Sunday, March 20.

This is an odd image of God.  I can’t remember ever seeing it before.  Mother hens have a bad reputation. They are usually seen as overprotective, interfering, overbearing, meddling in other people’s business. They cluck and pick and watch constantly.  Nobody likes a mother hen.  Nevertheless, that is the image that Jesus chooses to describe himself in tomorrow’s gospel lesson.  “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often have I desired to gather your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing!” (Luke 13: 34)

It is perhaps not surprizing that this mosaic is found in a church on the Mount of Olives, overlooking Jerusalem. Clearly it draws its inspiration from our gospel lesson.  These days the use of pronouns is controversial, both in relation to people and also in relation to God.  Terms like “Father” or “King” or “Son” are  now in considerable disfavour.  My own take is that,  while God is beyond the distinctions of  human sexuality, Jesus was a man.  He was the Son, not the daughter of God. That said, there are different kinds of men. He was certainly not a Vladimir Putin who has to flaunt a self-image of rugged, self-sufficient machismo that deserves the label “toxic masculinity”.   Jesus was a man willing to describe himself in feminine terms,  yearning to gather and protect vulnerable chicks in need of protection – like those hiding in bomb shelters in Kyiv.  This image of God as an empathetic mother, protecting her fearful little ones is also one that  came up last week in our responsive psalm. “You who live in the shelter of the Most High, who abide in the shadow of the Almighty,  will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress; my God, in whom I trust.” For he will deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the deadly pestilence; he will cover you with his pinions, and under his wings you will find refuge.”

Pinions are the outer feathers of a wing. God is depicted as a bird that hovers over her young and protects them by hiding them under her wings. So when we think of chickens, we shouldn’t just think  of stupid and cowardly birds, fit only for St. Hubert’s. Certainly when they are kept in the wild rather than in caged for life,  they are courageous at protecting their young.

Order of service

SUNDAY,  March 13, 2022 Lent 2


PWSD Lenten Liturgy

Hymn #665: “Lord Jesus, you shall be my song”

Prayer of Adoration

Prayer of Confession

Declaration of Grace

The Lord’s Prayer

Responsive reading: Psalm 27

Genesis 15: 1-12; 17-18

Hymn # 242 “What wondrous love is this”

Luke 13:  31-35

Anthem: “Above all”

Meditation:  “Jesus as mother hen”  

Hymn: “When we walk with the Lord”

Offering and Offertory

Prayer of Thanksgiving and Intercession

Hymn #651:  “Guide me, O thou great Redeemer”


“Go Now in Peace”