Memorial of Saint Martha
(Jeremiah 29:1-9; John 11:19-27)
Perhaps no actor in America has been as cherished as Lucille Ball. She became famous in the television series “I Love Lucy” of the early 1950s. Her performances in different episodes are still regularly cited. Lucy was so very human with most of the virtues and some of the shortcomings that describe the best of us. She can be compared with the character of Martha in the gospels.
Martha is well described as a friend of Jesus. She does not hesitate to ask his assistance in the famous passage from the Gospel of Luke. She also seems intimate enough with Jesus to question his behavior without worrying about loss of affection. In today’s gospel she implies a criticism of Jesus for delaying his trip to Bethany. But above all Martha shows extraordinary regard for Jesus as she recognizes him as “the Christ, the Son of God.”
Martha’s relationship with the Lord should encourage all of us. Like her we often find ourselves hitting our heads for talking too much. We may even wonder like her why it takes so long for Jesus to respond to our needs. But once again like her we believe that he is the Christ who has come into the world to lead us to eternal life.