Tuesday 1st Week of Easter
Mary Magdalene is the first of the disciples to appreciate that seeing Jesus and even holding on to him are not the best ways to be with him. Let us seek to find our Lord in the deeper experiences of our hearts.
Like all of us, Mary Magdalene came to learn that there are greater ways to be with Jesus than seeing him with our eyes.
We noticed yesterday
that in his resurrection appearances to people
Jesus always sends them on a mission,
“Go tell my brothers to go to Galilee and there they will see me.”
At the end of today’s gospel from John
Jesus tells Mary Magdalene,
“Go to my brothers and tell them,
‘I am going to my Father and your Father,
to my God and your God.’ ”
Before Mary got to that point
she had a hurdle to overcome – her grief.
It is interesting that Mary saw Jesus
but did not recognize him.
Her grief and deep sorrow of losing Jesus
was so overwhelming
that it unleashed itself through her eyes,
the gate of her soul,
so much that she could not see Jesus.
We must never be afraid to cry,
to share our grief and sorrow
over the loss of someone whom we love so much.
Indeed our sorrow and sadness
are all part of our witness.
Those raw emotions can touch another person’s heart
like no theological principle could ever do.
Recognizing Jesus on the other side
of our sorrows and our deaths
does not come through seeing.
Mary saw Jesus and thought he was the gardener.
It was only when Mary heard Jesus say her name
that she threw her arms around him.
Jesus told her she would no longer know in this way.
Jesus is teaching Mary and us
that we can embrace him in faith and in love
in a much deeper way than if we hugged him ourselves.
We truly embrace him Jesus in our brothers and sisters,
the sick and lonely, the poor and disabled,
and in anyone suffering in any way.
Jesus makes himself one with the neediest of our society.
We must go from the Eucharist every day and do the same.
Let us seek to find our Lord in the deeper experiences of our hearts.
And don’t forget the embrace of Jesus in joy
when that brother and sister comes to new life
because of the time and compassion we gave them.
May Jesus rise from the dead everywhere we go!