Woman in the Bible: St. Martha

Tell me: Doesn't she look totally bad-ass?

Tell me: Doesn’t she look totally bad-ass?

Martha often gets a bad rap. She’s the woman in the kitchen complaining about her sister. She’s the busybody that has no time for prayer. She’s the woman that we all are sometimes when what we really want is to be is Mary.

She doesn’t deserve all that, though. As one reflection notes, she’s not an “unrecollected activist.” She’s not being busy for the sake of being busy. While she’s working in the kitchen, she’s fully aware of what is going on in the front room.

“Yes, Lord. I have come to believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, the one who is coming into the world.” -St. Martha (John 11:27)

Yes, she’s a bit of a worrier. And like anyone else, she’s angry that her sister is just sitting on her butt while she’s running around trying to be hospitable. Hospitality has historically been a very important Jewish virtue.

You shall treat the alien who resides with you no differently than the natives born among you; you shall love the alien as yourself; for you too were once aliens in the land of Egypt. I, the LORD, am your God.

-Leviticus 19:34 

Martha was a good and faithful woman who tried to live out her faith in her everyday life. How many of us can say that? St. Martha, pray for us!


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