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Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint John 11,19-27. breski1 Many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to comfort them about their brother [Lazarus, who had died]. When Martha heard …More
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint John 11,19-27. breski1
Many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to comfort them about their brother [Lazarus, who had died].
When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went to meet him; but Mary sat at home.
Martha said to Jesus, "Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.
But even now I know that whatever you ask of God, God will give you."
Jesus said to her, "Your brother will rise."
Martha said to him, "I know he will rise, in the resurrection on the last day."
Jesus told her, "I am the resurrection and the life; whoever believes in me, even if he dies, will live,
and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?"
She said to him, "Yes, Lord. I have come to believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, the one who is coming into the world."

Copyright © Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, USCCB


Saint Francis de Sales (1567-1622)

Bishop of Geneva and Doctor of the Church
Introduction to the Devout Life, III, 19 (trans. John Ryan)

"Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus" (Jn 11:5)
Love everyone with a great, charitable love, but have no friendship except for those that communicate with you in the things of virtue. (…) If this communication be in the sciences, the friendship is certainly very commendable; but still more so if it be in virtues, in prudence, discretion, fortitude, and justice. Should your mutual and reciprocal communications relate to charity, devotion, and Christian perfection, O God, how precious will this friendship be! It will be excellent, because it comes from God; excellent, because it tends to God; excellent because its very bond is God; excellent, because it shall last eternally in God. Oh, how good it is to love on earth as they love in heaven; and to learn to cherish one another in this world as we shall do eternally in the next! I speak not here of that simple love of charity which we must have for all, but of that spiritual friendship, by which two, three or more souls communicate one to another their devotion and spiritual affections, and make themselves have but one spirit. (Cf. Acts 4:32) Such happy souls may justly sing: "Behold how good and pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!" (Ps 132[133]:1). (…) I consider all other friendships as but so many shadows in comparison with this one (…). For Christians who live in the world and desire to embrace true virtue, it is necessary to unite themselves together by a holy and sacred friendship. By this means they encourage, assist and conduct one another to good deeds (…) Surely no one can deny that our Lord loved Saint John, Lazarus, Martha and Magdalen with a more sweet and most special friendship, for Scripture tells us so.