Feast of Saint Mary Magdalene
2 Corinthians 5:17-17, Psalm 63:2, 3-4, 5-6, 8-9, & John 20:1-2, 11-18
"I have seen the Lord!"
Today the Church celebrates the memorial feast of Saint Mary Magdalene. We remember her as one of the women who remained at the feet of Jesus throughout His suffering and death on the cross. Additionally, we recognize Mary Magdalene as the first person to witness His Resurrection. Both are very important to consider as we examine today's readings and their importance in recognizing God's presence in our lives.
The Gospel narrative of Saint John focuses on Mary's visit to the tomb of Jesus. She arrives, finds it empty, and weeps. When Jesus confronts her, she can only say, "Sir, if you carried Him away, tell me where you laid Him, and I will take Him." Her grief and human failings blind Mary. She had forgotten Christ's promise that He would rebuild the temple in three days (John 2-19). She, who sat at the feast of Jesus and as He suffered on the cross, did not recognize that He stands in front of her. We often go through life just like Mary Magdalene, blinded by our everyday fears and hardships. Yet, her life and actions give us an example to follow. Though blinded by her human failings, she learned to have faith and trust in the constant presence of the mercy and love of Christ.
Friends, the Gospel scene with Mary Magdalene reminds us that we are often blind to Christ's presence in our lives. We, at times, forget how significant His death on the cross was. We forget that He laid down His life so that we could overcome our daily struggle with sin and that we might one day be one with the Lord in heaven. Many of us feel lost and unable to help against the senseless violence prevalent in our own country, yet Saint Mary Magdalene provides the answer to our ability to cope. That answer is Christ, Himself.
He is always here for us. We may not be able to see Him at all times because of our failings—our pride and worldly desires, yet Jesus remains with and within us. We must, just as Mary did, open our eyes and trust in the Lord. We have to offer ourselves up as He did in the only way we know how—by living a Christ-like life through our prayer life and acts of charity. By answering His call to know Him, love Him, and serve Him, we give ourselves entirely to Him just as our good Saint Mary Magdalene did when she proclaimed, "I have seen the Lord!"
Prayer: "Tell us, Mary, what did you see on the way? I saw the glory of the Risen Christ; I saw His empty tomb. Alleluia, alleluia."