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St. Martha (July 29)

St. Martha, the sister of Mary and Lazarus, lived with them in Bethany. It is apparent that they were very friendly with Jesus and received Him as a guest into their home frequently. On one occasion, Martha asked her sister, Mary, who was sitting at Jesus' feet, to help her prepare dinner. Jesus feeling that Martha was too preoccupied with household chores, stated that Mary had chosen the better part. A woman of practical concern and straightforward faith, Martha was rewarded for her simple hospitality and trust in the power of Jesus. While she served Jesus bodily food, she was fed within by the Holy Spirit. Beyond measure, God responds to those who quietly tend to the needs of other people.

Martha met and pleaded with Jesus, when her brother died and asked Jesus to raise Lazarus from the dead. Jesus said, "I am the resurrection and the life; whoever believes in me, though he should die, will come to life; and whoever is alive and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?" Martha replied, "Yes, Lord, I have come to believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God; He Who is to come into the world." Martha's tears of grief were turned into cries of joy when Lazarus was called back to life from the tomb at Jesus' word. According to legend, Martha, Mary and Lazarus went to preach the Gospel in France after the death of Jesus. She is the patroness of cooks.