Mary of Magdala: Apostle to the Apostles: by Pam Thorn
Yesterday, Easter Day, the daily eMailing during the Covid 19 crisis to our three parishes to the East of Cambridge included this reflection on Mary’s story which we know was much appreciated by several of our parishioners. I feel it deserves a wider audience.
Some of you may know that I have spent time during the past few years painting icons. I hasten to assure you, I am no artist, but with the help of teachers much more competent than I am, I now have a small collection of completed icons. My latest, and she gazes at me as I sit in my chair, is Mary Magdalene.
When I am painting an icon, I have hours of contemplation of my work, and at times, of the subject of my work. Mary Magdalene has long held a special place in my heart, and as I have learned more of her, I have come to appreciate her more and more.
So perhaps you would like to come with me, this Easter Day, and hear from Mary Magdalene herself, as I imagine what that very first Easter Day might have been like according to the Gospel of John:
I had not slept since that dreadful night when after our Passover Meal, Jesus was arrested in the garden. Oh yes, I was there, at the meal, and in the garden, and throughout the terrible, terrible hours of torture and torment that Jesus endured, until, at last, his pain was ended. ‘It is finished’, he cried in anguish.
That was one of the most amazing things about Jesus, that I and the other women still treasure. We were always included. He often told all his friends that men and women would be equal in His kingdom, so were equal as friends during those years of His teaching us all. Of course, some of the men grumbled, especially the ones who were more strict in their religious understanding. Peter was sometimes extremely grumpy that we were there.
So, on that morning, when the Sabbath was over, I was exhausted, but also so distraught that I just had to go and be near Him, be near His body, even if he was locked away in his tomb for ever.