Friday, August 7, 2009

Belated Reflections on St Martha

Christ in the House of Martha and Mary, Vermeer

"The Nun" by Dame Felicitas Corrigan, OSB
Nevertheless, there is a difference in the roles of parent and nun- they are complementary and need each other. If a young woman feels called to make a radical and exclusive renunciation of all subordinate goals, however lawful- and notably the joys of husband and home, she does so in the name and for the sake of the entire Church; at the same time, common sense points out that without fathers, mothers, and family life, there would be no potential priests, monks, or nuns. So the score is 50-50. One the one hand, Mary witnesses to the Absolute, to God's unchanging transcendence; on the other hand, Martha applies all her energies to building on earth the City of God.

Jamie on The Feast of St Martha
Sometimes in my kitchen I get these glimpses of what holy hospitality is like. Sometimes I realize that my ego is getting in the way again, making it about the food and not about loving service. Always, from Edinburgh to the Midwest to the East Coast and back again, St. Martha with her basket of bread has been nearby as a gentle reminder to keep on choosing the better part. [full post]

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