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A Xt3 Member asked at 9:07am on December 6th 2018
Hello. I am not Catholic, but my husband's family is.

Recently I've been interested in the story of Lazarus. Do we know anything about his life before Christ resurrected him? After? I would imagine that since he had been dead, he may have been considered unclean by the populace after his resurrection.

Thank you in advance.

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Hi Alexis, all we know about Lazarus is from the Gospel, where he's the brother of Martha and Mary, who live at Bethany - which was a place many pilgrims from Galilee would stay in on their way to Jerusalem. Since I guess there was no provision in the Jewish law for how to treat someone raised from the dead, I can't imagine how Lazarus could have been regarded as unclean.

And, in fact, six days before the Passover feast, St John tells us that 'Jesus came to Bethany, where Lazarus was, whom Jesus had raised from the dead. There they made him a supper; Martha served, and Lazarus was one of those at table with him' (Jn 12: 1-2). There's no mention there of anyone considering Lazarus unclean, rather he's seen as very much alive, able to share in a meal with all the others. Very best, Fr Brendan
Xt3's Ask a Priest answered at 3:40pm on February 12th 2019 reply

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