Today sees the newly established Memorial of Saints Martha, Mary and Lazarus - and it's believed that the idea for the decision came from Scotland!

Pope Francis recently decreed the inscription of the saints into the General Roman Calendar, to replace the existing celebration of Saint Martha alone.

It means all liturgical books around the world will be updated with the prayers and texts proper to these three companions of Jesus.


Fr Gerard Byrne, who sits on the national Liturgy Commission, said a priest from Galloway Diocese wrote to Bishop Hugh Gilbert, president of the Bishop's Conference of Scotland, with the initial suggestion.

He added: "Bishop Gilbert was open to this because the three saints are already celebrated together in the Benedictine calendar. He was advised to petition the Pope directly and did so. After a while a letter from the Holy See arrived announcing the decision."

Saints Martha, Mary and Lazarus are to be celebrated each year as an Obligatory Memorial on 29 July. Priests have been sent liturgical instructions to help them celebrate the new Memorial.

Saints Martha, Mary and Lazarus, pray for us!

Read more here.