The Cathedral Connection 21 July 2019

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The Family at Bethany

Today’s gospel is from Luke, but it is important to see it in relation to two incidents involving Mary, Martha and Lazarus in John’s Gospel.

In today’s gospel (Luke 10: 38-42) Martha welcomes Jesus in her home. She then prepares a meal. Mary sits at Jesus’s feet, listening. Lazarus is not mentioned, but could possibly be there, observing the situation. Jesus commends Mary’s contemplative nature and gently chides Martha on her ‘worrying about many things’.

In John 11, Martha and Mary send a message to Jesus that Lazarus is ill.  It is Martha only that goes to meet Jesus and gently suggests he could have prevented Lazarus’ death, but adds  ‘‘.. even now, whatever you ask of God he will grant you.’  What faith. They talk and Martha acknowledges Jesus as ‘the resurrection and the life.’ Even greater faith.  Mary, the contemplative, only comes later, when Jesus calls her.  Lazarus, being dead is not too involved until he is resurrected!

In John 12:1-11, there is a meal at the home of Simon the Leper.  It is said that Lazarus is there, and that Martha waited on Jesus.  Mary, the contemplative, pours costly ointment over Jesus’ feet. She senses Jesus’ approaching death and anoints his body in preparation.

All three are remarkable people, ‘in tune’ with Jesus and his message. They can be models for us, as we seek to do the same.

Fr Ron

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