The Gospels make it clear: Lazarus—and his sisters, Mary and Martha—were special friends of Jesus. They were so close that “Jesus wept” (John 11:35) at the tomb of his dear friend; so close that Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead and returned him, alive and whole, to his mourning sisters.
I'd recommend Fr. Sean Davidson's"Mary Magdalene Prophetess of Eucharistic Love." In this book he goes over Church tradition that say Mary Magdalene, Mary of Bethany, and the penitent woman of Luke 7:36-50 are the same woman.
One is free to believe this "identification theory" or not but personally it has helped me understand this wonderful, but somewhat controversial, saint better.
This has given me pause for thought on three levels. One, out of curiousity where was Lazarus? It is more than likely that the third Mary was Mary of Bethany. It had to be someone who lived nearby. It is reasonable that since the Bible mentions disciples not just apostles at the Last Supper, Mary of Bethany was there. She was certainly a disciple, plus the Passover was a family and close friends celebration. So where was Lazarus?Two it is a very reasonable assumption that Lazarus was very afraid, and my immediate thought was, 'how could he be so self centered '? Of course, I never would be which leads to the third realization which Jenny speaks of. Take a hard look at myself. I probably would have been right behind the apostles, disciples and Lazarus!!!!!!