Bible Passage (John 12:1-8)


Today is the fifth Sunday in Lent.  Next Sunday is Palm Sunday.  The color for Lent is purple.  During Lent, learn about Jesus and his disciples and prepare ourselves to celebrate Easter.

Today, we learn about a time Jesus had dinner with his friends Mary, Martha, and Lazarus.

Watch the video to learn more:


Jesus was having dinner with Mary, Martha, and Lazarus at their home.  Mary broke open a jar of very expensive perfume called nard and poured it on Jesus’ feet and then dried them with her hair.  The whole house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume.

Now that seems sort of strange to us, but at that time people would have their feet washed when they came inside to eat because their feet would get dirty from the dusty roads they walked while wearing sandals.  So washing someone’s feet wasn’t unusual at all.  That happened every day.

Using the costly perfume, nard, was unusual.  Mary loved Jesus and she wanted to show that love with her actions and so she used this expensive perfume to show Jesus her love.  She was anointing him before he died on the cross.  When someone is anointed, they are set apart for God.  Other people are anointed in the Bible.  We are anointed with oil when we are baptized.  The pastor makes the sign of the cross on our foreheads and says, “You have been sealed by the Holy Spirit and marked with the cross of Christ forever.”

You and I have been anointed, or set apart for God, and we can show our love for God by our actions like Mary did.  Now, that doesn’t mean that we put expensive perfume on people’s feet, but it means that we can serve others in Jesus’ name.  We can feed the hungry.  We help those who are in any need.  We can show our love for God by our actions.


  • What is your favorite smell?
  • What is the best gift you’ve ever received?
  • How can you serve someone else in Jesus’ name?




Never Let Go of Me.  LifeTree Kids.  (Go ahead and do the motions!)



Cut a paper plate into the shape of a jar like the jar that stored Mary’s oil and then decorate it.



This video is the story Nerdy Birdy by Aaron Reynolds.  In this story, Nerdy Birdy takes a risk and makes a new friend.  Mary took a risk and anointed Jesus’ feet with the nard.  We sometimes have to take a risk to serve others in Jesus’ name.


Closing Prayer

Jesus, we love you.  Help us show that love through our actions by serving others in your name.  Amen.


Pastor Dan Fugate, Assistant to the Bishop for Discipleship in the Indiana-Kentucky Synod, ELCA, put this lesson together for Sunday School @ Home.  Contact him at [email protected].