Saturday, July 22, 2017

A Prayer on the Feast of Mary Magdalene

Wisdom Spirit, help me recognize and accept my call to witness to Your power to bring life from death.

When Jesus called Mary by name, she recognized him. Saving One, give me ears to hear and eyes to see my true name, calling deep within.

Jesus sent Mary, Salome, and the other women disciples to proclaim the Good News to the Apostles even though they would not believe them. Rabboni, teach me how to proclaim the miracle of your Risen Love in a disbelieving world. Because of her witness and fidelity, Mary of Magdala is known as the Apostle to the Apostles.

Help me, O God of Righteousness, to accept your apostolic call "to go and tell” our brothers and sisters of Jesus' power to heal . . . even wounded structures which exclude.

Women were faithful disciples of Jesus and significant leaders in the early Christian communities.

Help me Most Inclusive One, to reclaim my baptismal call to leadership.

Writes author and spiritual director Susan Stabile:

Today the Catholic Church celebrates the feast of Mary Magdalene, faithful disciple of Christ. Until last year, we referred to this day as her “memorial,” but Pope Francis elevated the memorial to a feast day, giving her the same level of celebration as the other apostles.

Maligned for centuries, all we know of her origins is that she was a woman “from whom seven demons had gone out.” What we do know from the Gospels is that she was one of the women who followed Jesus to the cross and who stayed there while the male disciples fled.

We also know that Mary was the first to actually see the risen Jesus, and today’s Gospel recounts that beautiful scene. What is apparent from the encounter of these two is how much she loved Jesus. (Father Raymond-Leopold Bruckberger, O.P., once wrote that Mary loved Christ “with all the force of her being.”) We can see evidence of that love in the grief Mary displays outside of the tomb when she discovered Jesus’ body is gone. We see it in her tears and frantic search for any information she can find that will help her find the body. And we see it in her joy when she realizes that the person she has taken for a gardener is, in fact, the risen Jesus.

– Susan Stabile
Excerpted from "Mary Magdalene:
Apostle to the Apostle and Woman of Love
Creo en Dios!
July 22, 2017

See also the previous Wild Reed posts:
Mary of Magdala
Apostle to the Apostles
Thoughts on The Da Vinci Code
Thoughts on Ordination, Intellectual Dishonesty, and the Holy Spirit of which the Prophet Joel Speaks
Tell Them, Mary
The Model of Leadership Offered by Jesus: "More Like the Gardener Than the Owner of the Garden"

Related Off-site Links:
She Was NOT A Prostitute – Fola Folayan (, April 13, 2017).
What Would Mary Magdalene Do? – Phyllis Zagano (National Catholic Reporter, July 18, 2012).
What Mary Magdalene and the Samaritan Teach the Church – Jamie L. Manson (National Catholic Reporter, July 24, 2012).
A Homily for the Feast of Mary Magdalene – Diana Culbertson, OP (The Progressive Catholic Voice, July 22, 2011).
The Woman from Magdala – James Martin, S.J. (America, July 22, 2009).

Image: Chipo Chung as Mary Magdalene in NBC's 2015 mini-series, A.D. The Bible Continues.

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