Martha, Matron Saint of Clergywomen

She does it all – she loves babies and cleans up all sorts of messes, but all she really wants to do is sit at the feet of Jesus.

st martha

You were warned it was a thankless job,
But no one warned you that it was also a thank-full job;
That for every sorrow there would be three blessings,
and you would learn, sooner or later,
that you were never really alone,
that saints went before you,
and saints will go after you,
And Jesus is there, in the guise of a stranger or friend,
Thank you.


About Martha’ creation:

Martha was my very first mosaic, and at the time I made her, my only mosaic.  Her attributes of baby and plumber’s friend seemed appropriate to me, as a clergy woman.  When the church calls a female pastor it is assumed that women will be good with children, and will want to do work with children and youth.  In some churches, women are given leadership roles only with children and youth.  I say that’s because it’s too important to entrust to anyone but women, but others would disagree.  I know many clergy for whom unplugging toilets falls under “other duties as assigned.”  But figuratively speaking too, women are often left to clean up the messes others made.  The women who surround her are all those who went before her who served the church but were denied leadership, Martha’s cheerleaders from the sidelines, those women without whom Martha would not be The Reverend.