July 29, 2016

Martha

July 29, 2016:  St. Martha

  • 'Silverware' tie bar:  Martha's doing the serving (gospel)
  • 'Feet' tie/pin:  Mary sat at the Lord's feet (gospel)
  • 'Question mark' tie pin:  Jesus' to Martha, Martha's to Jesus (gospels)
  • White shirt:  Color of St. Martha's memorial
Listen


For the gospels
For the psalm
    Pope Francis to Polish political leaders
    Consciousness of one’s own identity, free of any pretense, is indispensable for establishing a community on a human, social, political, economic, and religious heritage, and inspiring social life and culture in a spirit of fidelity and openness.  Harmony, in the midst of diversity, is the path to achieving the common good.  Fruitful cooperation and mutual esteem grow through awareness of, and respect for, one’s and others' identities.  Dialogue can't exist unless each party starts from their own identity.  Each individual and society has good and bad memories:  good memory is what the Bible shows us in the Magnificat, praise of the Lord and his works; bad memory is fixed on evil, especially wrongs committed by others....
    Nurturing good memory while leaving the bad behind requires hope and trust in the One who guides peoples, opens doors, turns problems into opportunities, and creates new scenarios from apparently hopeless situations.  Awareness of progress and joy at goals achieved, become a source of strength for facing present challenges.  These call for the courage of truth and ethical commitment, to ensure that decisions, actions, and relationships, will respect human dignity....
    Wisdom and compassion are needed to overcome fear and achieve the greater good.  Seek out the reasons for emigration and facilitate the return of all wishing to repatriate.  Have a spirit of readiness to welcome those fleeing from war and hunger, and solidarity with those deprived of their rights.  Develop new forms of exchange and cooperation to resolve conflicts and wars that force people to leave home.  Do everything possible to alleviate suffering while working for justice and peace, bearing witness with human and Christian values.
    Look with hope to the future to favor a climate of respect and constructive debate and create the best conditions for civil, economic, and demographic growth, fostering hope for good life for coming generations.  The young should be able to enjoy creation, the benefits we can provide, and the hope we can offer.  Policies supporting the family, assisting underprivileged and poor families, and helping welcome life, will prove more effective.  Welcome and protect life; welcome and protection go together, from conception to natural death.  We're all called to respect life and care for it.  It's the responsibility of State, Church, and society to accompany and help all in difficulty, so that a child will never be seen as a burden but a gift, and the vulnerable and poor won't be abandoned.
    Read
    • Jer 26:1-9  Speak what I tell you to the people of Judah; perhaps they'll turn from their evil ways.  Say, "Thus says the Lord:  If you disobey me, I'll treat this house like Shiloh."  The priests and prophets laid hold of him:  “You must be put to death!”  All the people gathered about Jeremiah.
      St. Martha, from
      the Isabella Breviary
    • Ps 69:5, 8-10, 14  "Lord, in your great love, answer me."  Many hate me without cause.  For your sake I bear insult and have become an outcast.  Zeal for your house consumes me.  I pray for your favor, O God!
    • 1 Jn 4:7-16  Love one another, because love is of God; everyone who loves is begotten by God and knows God.  God is love; he revealed his love by sending his Son so we might have life.  Love isn't that we've loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son....  If God so loved us, we must love one another.  If we do, God and his love are in us....
    • Ps 34:2-11  "I will bless the Lord at all times."  The Lord answered and delivered me.  Look to him.  The Lord saves those who fear him.  Taste and see the Lord is good.  Those who seek the Lord lack no good thing.
    • Jn 11:19-27  When Martha heard Jesus was coming, she went to meet him.  Martha / Jesus:  “Lord, if you'd been here, my brother wouldn't have died.  But I know God will give you whatever you ask.” / “He'll rise.” / “Yes, in the resurrection.” / “I am the resurrection; whoever believes in me will live, and anyone who believes in me will never die.  Do you believe this?” / “Yes, Lord.  I believe you're the Christ, the one who is coming into the world.”
    • Lk 10:38-42  Jesus entered a village where Martha welcomed him.  Her sister Mary sat at his feet listening to him.  Martha / Jesus:  “Lord, don't you care that my sister left me by myself to serve?  Tell her to help.” / “Martha, you're anxious about many things, but only one is needed.  Mary has chosen the better part and it won't be taken from her.”
    Reflect
      • Creighton:  Martha, Mary, and Lazarus were among Jesus' closest friends.  Today's gospels show a saint who had great faith but wasn't perfect.  Martha  was no plastic saint.  Jesus was not present when Lazarus died but arrived days later.  Martha got up immediately and went to meet him. She believes that Lazarus would not have died if Jesus had been present.  Martha calls Jesus Lord, Christ, Son of God; she's a saint because she trusted Jesus....
        Jesus at the house of
        Mary and Martha/ Copping
      • One Bread, One Body:  "The home front":  We may be surprised when our own religious leaders, or family members, attack and reject us.  "If an enemy had reviled me, I could have borne it....  But you...!"  All who want "to live a godly life in Christ" will be persecuted.  When we hear of persecution, we should rejoice we've been chosen to share Jesus' sufferings.
      • Passionist:  Jeremiah was true to God’s word even if it means being unpopular, disrespected, even hated.  He speaks on behalf of God; this leads him to unpopular speeches.  His words challenge, even threaten, and he's treated with hostility.  In John, Martha is the prophetic voice; she acknowledges Jesus as Messiah.  She acknowledges and praises Jesus on one of her saddest days, when her beloved Lazarus has died.  The prophetic voice gives praise to God amidst gloom.  Jeremiah and John enter into the suffering and hopelessness and reinterpret God in these situations.
      Draw courage from Martha who knew the redemption of Christ.  Jesus challenges her to put her hope in him.  Martha’s challenge to us is to see and trust in the here and now, even when we are having a bad day.  Even in the midst of sadness and sorrow, can we discover a redeeming messiah?  Jeremiah re-affirms this message, asking us to find some way to give praise to God even in hours of darkness.   So perhaps we are left with two questions:  Where do you see God today?  And how in your own way do you give praise to this Divine one?
      • DailyScripture.net:  "Martha said to Jesus, 'I know he'll rise again'":  The loss of a loved one produces grief and anguish.  When Martha heard Jesus was coming to pay his respects, she immediately went out to meet him.  She believed in resurrection; her loss didn't diminish her hope.  She even chides Jesus for not coming soon enough to save Lazarus.  Jesus gave her belief a new meaning:  he came to restore life to all who believe in him.  The life he offers is from God himself....
      • Universalis:  Martha, sister of Mary of Bethany and Lazarus.  Lazarus deserves our sympathy for being brought back to life by Jesus so as to have to die again.  Think of him when preparing to make spectacular acts of charity on behalf of people who may not appreciate it.