Tuesday in the Octave of Easter 2007
April 10, 2007
Mary Magdalene's response to Jesus at the tomb was something that perplexed me no end when I was a kid. I was that kid every Sunday School teacher dreads, the one who asks a myriad of questions trying to make issues of faith into tangibles. I am sure I gave my teacher a few gray hairs. I guess I still cause a lot gray hairs! SO why didn't Mary Magdalene recognize Jesus? Was it a Clark Kent moment? Did Jesus part his hair different that day?
I post those questions with tongue in cheek so please forgive me. No disrespect is intended. It's just that it is a bit confusing. Mary Magdalene knew Jesus so well and it is curious she didn't recognise him. Or is it? Jesus has risen from the dead, his earthly body has been transformed into the perfect body that we will all receive on the day of resurrection. Jesus is transformed into what we await, the perfection of spirit and body that will enter Heaven.
Mary Magdalene is first witness to the Resurrection and is given a vision of what awaits all who proclaim Jesus is Lord. What an amazing gift she is given! It is no wonder that her senses are overwhelmed. Mary Magdalene sees fully the promise of Salvation and Resurrection. So I gues it isn't so surprising she didn't recognise him. The problem is our refusal to reconise Christ.
So how does this apply to us in the 21st century? I believe that we are challenged by our Gospel text today to recognise God in everything and everyone. That means seeing God in one another, the glory of God in creation. We are called to recognise God in the Eucharist the Body and Blood of our Lord! We are called to become that which we receive! We can be blinded by sin. We can be blinded by our apathy and cynicism. As a result we fail to recognise Christ among us and we miss the glorious miracles that are worked in our midst every single day.
We come to Mass to worship our Lord. We come to Mass to receive the Body and Blood of Christ and become that which we receive adn to in turn be faithful witness to the Gospel. We are called as the Lord's disciples, to see the face of our Lord in one another. When we are able to do that then we can truly be like Mary Magdalene, our eyes will be opened and we can see Jesus as he truly is, the source of our Salvation!