Martha and Mary.
 Hochhalter, Cara B.

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Title:Martha and Mary
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Martha and Mary
Luke 10:38-42
"A friend of mine, who loves to cook, complained that Martha gets a bad rap in this story when she should be honored for making the meal! So I focused on Martha. I wanted to capture her exasperation of feeling torn between her obligation to provide a meal and wanting to hear what stories Jesus was telling her sister. Many of us who prepare meals can relate to this situation. We also might relate to Martha when she gets a little perturbed. Why isn’t her sister helping her? Perhaps Martha is jealous and a little childishly angry as she asks Jesus to make Mary help. The stories around Jesus touch on very human feelings that we can see in ourselves today...Perhaps there is a way to meet both our contemplative needs and our desire for doing at the same time. I am reminded of the seventeenth-century lay monk, Brother Lawrence, who spent years learning how to “practice the presence of God” at the same time that he was doing ordinary chores such as preparing meals for the monastery. What a delightful challenge for us."

The Rev. Cara B. Hochhalter is a United Church of Christ (UCC) minister. She received her Masters of Divinity from United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities in Minnesota, where she studied the intersections of art, theology and justice. She served the Charlemont Federated Church in Massachusetts for ten years and now lives in Hyde Park, New York.

“Over the last thirty years, through my work as a Christian Educator, a seminary student and UCC minister, I have created images that interpret the powerful stories around the life of Jesus. These stories hold universal truths not limited to Christianity but relevant for all our lives and times. I find that art provides a very special means to break into these texts.”

The images in her book, A Challenging Peace in the Life and Stories of Jesus were created through the simple print-making process of carving out a block, applying ink and pulling a print. Cara says, “The interaction of light and dark is important in each image as we cannot have one without the other. The dark defines the light, and vice versa. I find this to be theological as we look to the whole—the light and the dark, the joy and the despair, the peace and the conflict—all under an umbrella of Divine Love that yearns for wholeness.”

Using her book, Cara also offers three online discussion groups: Jesus and Justice, Parables and Peace-making, and The Paradox of Humility in the Stories of Jesus.

To contact Cara B. Hochhalter for information about her art, to purchase signed prints of the images, or her book, A Challenging Peace in the Life and Stories of Jesus, please email:

Artist:Hochhalter, Cara B.

Scripture:Luke 10:38-42
Person as Subject:Jesus Christ (Biblical figure)
Mary, of Bethany (Biblical figure)
Martha, of Bethany (Biblical figure)
Lectionary links:CProp11
General Subject:Work

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Copyright Source:Cara B. Hochhalter
Copyright Permission:The artist has granted permission for the non-commercial use of this image with attribution. The artist must be contacted for other uses.
Attribution:Hochhalter, Cara B.. Martha and Mary, from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN. [retrieved April 16, 2024]. Original source: Cara B. Hochhalter.
Record Number:58910 Last Updated: 2022-06-23 16:23:20 Record Created: 2021-10-01 14:42:05
Institution:Vanderbilt University Collection: Art in the Christian Tradition