St. George's Episcopal Church

St. George's Episcopal Church | Growing in Christ's Love and Service | 5520 Far Hills Avenue, Dayton Ohio  45429 | 937-434-1781
Mary and Martha Window Mary and Martha Window

Mary and Martha take us deeper by represent [the] character [of our parish], that of Christian hospitality.  These sisters deeply believed in Jesus as the Messiah and Son of God, welcomed him into their home, listened to his words, served him, and proclaimed him.  As Episcopalians we affirm their example in our Baptismal Covenant:  professing Jesus as God’s only Son, continuing in the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, serving Christ in all persons, and proclaiming the good news of God in Christ.   As a parish we do the same, offering hospitality to all—preaching the Gospel, welcoming home, listening, and serving.

Mary and Martha were friends of Jesus and often welcomed him into their home.  Three visits in particular are remembered in the Gospels.  On the first, as Jesus spoke to his disciples, Mary sat at his feet and listened while Martha served.  When Martha complained about Mary not helping, Jesus answered that Mary had chosen life’s one necessity—to listen to him.   Based on this story, Martha and Mary have become models of the active life (of service) and the contemplative life (of prayer), respectively; neither complete in itself, but each complementing the other. The second visit came four days after their brother Lazarus had died.  Jesus met Martha on the way to the gravesite to console her, assuring her that Lazarus would rise again.  Martha believed that Jesus was the Messiah, and that her brother would rise on the last day.  But Jesus explained that he not only restores life, he is the Life, and to those who believe in him he gives eternal life.  Then Jesus commanded Lazarus to come out of the tomb, raising him from the dead.   Paradoxically, when word spread to the authorities, it was this miracle which convinced them that Jesus must die.  During his final visit, on the eve of his “triumphal entry” into Jerusalem, Mary poured costly perfume on his feet and dried them with her hair. Jesus accepted her devotion as a symbol of his burial, which would occur before the end of the week. 

The warm friendship of this window reflects the hospitality of our parish. The sisters are shown in their home with Jesus, serving him and listening attentively.  The lamp is the light of the gospel that shines from our hilltop as we proclaim Christ to the world.

Like Stars Appearing:  The Story of the Stained Glass Windows of St. George's Episcopal Church, Dayton, Ohio
copyright 2004 by Anne E. Rowland.  All rights reserved.
Stained Glass Windows copyright 2000 by St. George's Episcopal Church, crafted by Willet Stained Glass.

St. George's Home North Nave Windows Next Window