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Archive for July 22nd, 2018

Alleluia. Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord.” Alleluia.

COLLECT OF THE DAY

Almighty God, Your Son, Jesus Christ, restored Mary Magdalene to health and called her to be the first witness of His resurrection. Heal us from all our infirmities, and call us to know You in the power of Your Son’s unending life; through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. 

READINGS:  Proverbs 31:10-31  Psalm 73:23-28  Acts 13:26-31  St.John 20:1-2, 10-18

From a sermon on the Gospels by Gregory the Great: 

            When Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and did not find the Lord’s body, she thought it had been taken away and so informed the disciples. After they came and saw the tomb, they too believed what Mary had told them. The text then says: The disciples went back home, and it adds; but Mary wept and remained standing outside the tomb.

            We should reflect on Mary’s attitude and the great love she felt for Christ; for though the disciples had left the tomb, she remained. She was still seeking the one she had not found, and while she sought she wept; burning with the fire of love, she longed for him who she thought had been taken away. And so it happened that the woman who stayed behind to seek Christ was the only one to see him. For perseverance is essential to any good deed, as the voice of truth tells us: Whoever perseveres to the end will be saved.

            At first she sought but did not find, but when she persevered it happened that she found what she was looking for. When our desires are not satisfied, they grow stronger, and becoming stronger they take hold of their object. Holy desires likewise grow with anticipation, and if they do not grow they are not really desires. Anyone who succeeds in attaining the truth has burned with such a love. As David says: My soul has thirsted for the living God;  When shall I come and appear before the face of God? And so also in the Song of Songs the Church says: I was wounded by love; and again: My soul is melted with love.

            Woman, why are you weeping? Whom do you seek? She is asked why she is sorrowing so that her desire might be strengthened; for when she mentions whom she is seeking, her love is kindled all the more ardently.

            Jesus says to her: Mary. Jesus is not recognized when he calls her “woman”; so He calls her by name, as though He were saying: Recognize me as I recognize you; for I do not know you as I know others; I know you as yourself. And so Mary, once addressed by name, recognizes who is speaking. She immediately calls him rabboni, that is to say, teacher, because the one whom she sought outwardly was the one who inwardly taught her to keep on searching. (Quoted in Festivals and Commemorations, Augsburg Publishing House, 1980,  Pr. Philip H. Pfatteicher)

Post-Script:  Jesus called Mary Magdalene by name and the Gospel narrative of the Crucifixion and the  Resurrection illustrates our Lord as the Good Shepherd:  

The good shepherd lays down his life ; for the sheep

that they may have life and have it abundantly.

The sheep hear his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name(St. John 10: 11 b, 10b, 3b)

The Lord has called you when He baptized you in His Name, Father, +Son and Holy Spirit.  Alleluia!

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