Mary and Martha of Bethany

A beautiful post on the figures of Mary and Martha of Bethany from an Orthodox Christian perspective.

The Orthodox Church will always provide difficulties for fundamentalists. We have far too much poetry, far too many “good stories,” including those told by the Lord Himself, far too many loose associations in the writings of our people over the last two thousand years or so to satisfy those who would prefer religion to be proclaimed by a precise and complete video camera documentary of all that has happened from the first moment of Creation.

Our Orthodox approach to Mary, the Theotokos, and Mary and Martha, the Myrrhbearers and sisters of Lazarus, is no exception. The “common” Gospel reading for feasts of the Theotokos blatantly conflates Mary, the Mother of Jesus with Mary, the sister of Lazarus: “Jesus entered a village; and a woman named Martha received him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching. But…

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