From my book, Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious: Celebrating the Gift of Catholic Womanhood:
Here’s a vision of hope for every woman stung by bad decisions and the pain of sin. It is the life of St. Mary Magdalene. First, imagine Mary Magdalene, one of the notorious sinners mentioned in the New Testament, from whom seven devils were cast out. When she met the God of love, she turned from her sins, converted, and lived to love and serve Jesus.
Now, here’s a second picture to envision: At the foot of Jesus’s Cross, the Gospel records that Mary Magdalene stood next to the Blessed Virgin Mary—the woman the Church declares and Mother of God, and John Paul II called “the mirror and measure of femininity” (See Angelus Message, 3, June 25, 1995.)
In the New Testament [Mary Magdalene] is mentioned among the women who accompanied Christ and ministered to Him (Lk 8:2–3), where it is also said that seven devils had been cast out of her (Mk 16:9). She is next named as standing at the foot of the cross (Mk 15:40; Mt 27:56; Jn 19:25; Lk 23:49). She saw Christ laid in the tomb, and she was the first recorded witness of the Resurrection. (Jn 20:11–18)
(Pope, “St. Mary Magdalen ”, New Advent.)
If Mary Magdalene, with her checkered past, can stand with the Blessed Virgin Mary – the epitome of grace and womanhood – then we all have a chance to do the same. The Blessed Mother is truly the friend and refuge of sinners…
2 comments on “Why I love Saint Mary Magdalene”
I love this, Pat! I admit I had not thought that much of St. Mary Magdalene, until my recent Spiritual Exercises retreat, where one of our talks was on St. Mary Magdalene and God’s merciful love. From the talk: She surrendered all to Jesus, who was the sole conqueror of her soul! She had the perfect contrition, for she was confident that Jesus would receive her; prompt in her going to Jesus; generous in giving Him everything; constant, as she followed Him all the way to Calvary. She lived on His mercy, and is our example to do the same! Thanks for the reminder of her feast day today. It gave me the chance to review my notes from my retreat and receive hope and joy from the message of Jesus’ divine mercy!
Sara, those are beautiful thoughts. I love the confidence in Jesus you write about. (Personally, I love going back over retreat notes or early journal notes — really helps us, doesn’t it? To see our growth?)
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