St. Mary Magdalene
Apostle to the Apostles (First Century)
Mary Magdalene was one of the original Galilean disciples
of Jesus and the most eminent among the many women who
followed in his itinerant ministry. Little can be said about her
origins; she is characterized simply as a “woman from whom
seven demons had gone out.” There is no scriptural basis for
the later tradition that depicted her as a penitent prostitute.
The Gospels name her among the women who followed Jesus
to Golgotha and there witnessed his passion and death. While
all the male disciples fled, it was these women who remained
faithful to the end. It was also they who went to his tomb on
the third day hoping to anoint his body.
Instead they found an empty tomb, guarded by an angel
who revealed the news that Jesus was risen. The women were
charged to tell the disciples to meet the Lord back in Galilee.
In the Gospels of John and Matthew (and the longer ending
of Mark), Mary actually sees the Risen Lord. According to
John, Mary stood weeping outside the tomb when she saw
Jesus, though without recognizing him. When he addresses
her with a single word, “Mary,” she calls out, “Rabboni!
Teacher.” He instructs her to go to the disciples and tell them,
“I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God
and your God.”
It was Mary Magdalene, the faithful disciple, who first pro-
claimed the good news to the Twelve. Thus she has often been
called the “Apostle to the Apostles.” Her feast is on July 22.
Wow, Imagine Jesus telling you this. Well there is no need to imagine because he really has told you and I this. His words are always so touching to my heart. This verse left me with so much to think of on Tuesday’s Mass reading.
This is the reflection Sister Gail Fitzpatrick had on the Mass readings for June 12, 2012
from “Give Us This Day”.
A Light in the Darkness
There is a custom in rural Norway of hanging a light in one’s
window that will burn throughout the night. In earlier times
these lights shining through dense fog or swirling snow could
be a saving beacon for a disoriented traveler.
In today’s Gospel Jesus challenges his disciples to go fur-
ther than just hanging a light in the window. He tells them:
“You are the light of the world . . . and your light must shine
It’s hard for us to see ourselves as light for anyone. We are
so aware of our own inner darkness, fear, or doubt. Like the
widow in Elijah’s day who saw only her meager supply of flour
and oil, we feel our poverty. But the prophet urged her to go
further—to trust—and God worked through her limited
means to feed her household for a year.
Often it is through the meager good deeds of one of Jesus’
disciples that others catch a glimpse of the works of God.
John the Evangelist has Jesus saying: “I am the light of the
world” (John 8:12). And Matthew has the Lord tell his dis-
ciples: “You are the light of the world” (Matt 5:14). Ought we
not assume that a profound relationship is being described
The “I am” and the “You are” imply an identification that
carries a far-reaching responsibility: as Jesus is light, so we
must be light—light in the dark for a child, a friend, a fellow
traveler, a world.
Sr. Gail Fitzpatrick
Gail Fitzpatrick, OCSO, is a member of Our Lady of Mississippi
Abbey in Dubuque, Iowa, where she served as abbess from
This is a verse from the second reading for Mass today the Eleventh Sunday in Ordinary Time.
It always seems to take me by surprise how the Lord speaks to me. I ask, he listens and responds. He is so good to me. What Saint Paul says here is deeper than what we can understand from the surface of these words.
This image took so many tries and when I finally though I had it the program froze! So I questioned if I should start all over because the first time I did not save it. And I did and I think it turned out better than the first, second, third, fourth and even fifth try. Praise be to God.