Tuesday, March 28, 2006

St. Mary Magdalene, pray for us

No, today is not the feast of Saint Mary Magdalene. Her memorial falls on July 22. But I thought it might be a good preparation for the upcoming DaVinci Code movie to offer the prayers to God and to St. Mary Magdalene that the Church offers each year on her feast day. This is taken from Volume XIII of "The Liturgical Year" by Abbot Gueranger O.S.B. published by Marian House, Powers Lake, ND 58773.

Collect:
Father,
your Son first entrusted to Mary Magdalene
the joyful news of His resurrection.
By her prayers and example
may we proclaim Christ as our living Lord
and one day see Him in glory,
for he lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

First Reading: Song of Songs 3:1-4
The bride says this: On my bed, at night, I sought him whom my heart loves. I sought but did not find him. so I will rise and go through the City; in the streets and the squares I will seek him whom my heart loves. I sought but did not find him. The watchmen came upon me on their rounds in the City: "Have you seen him whom my heart loves?" Scarcely had I passed them than I found him whom my heart loves.

optional first reading: 2 Corinthians 5:14-17

Gospel Reading: John 20: 1-2.11-18
It was very early on the first day of the week and still dark, when Mary of Magdala came to the tomb. She saw that the stone haed been moved away from the tomb and came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved. "They have taken the Lord out of the tomb", she said, "and we don't know where they have put Him".

Meanwhile, Mary stayed outside near the tomb, weeping. Then, still weeping, she stooped to look inside, and saw two angels in white sitting where the body of Jesus had been, one at the head, the other at the feet. They said, "Woman, why are you weeping?" "They have taken my Lord away", she replied, "and I don't know where they have put Him". As she said this she turned round and saw Jesus standing there, though she did not recognize Him. Jesus said, "Woman, why are you weeping? Who are you looking for?" Supposing Him to be the gardener, she said, "Sir, if you have taken Him away, tell me where you have put Him, and I will go and remove Him". Jesus said, "Mary!" She knew Him then and said to Him in Hebrew, "Rabbuni!" -- which means Master. Jesus said to her, "Do not cling to me, because I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go and find the brothers, and tell them: I am ascending to my Father and to your Father, to my God and your God". So Mary of Magdala went and told the disciples that she had seen the Lord and that he had said these things to her.

Prayer
Praise be to Thee, O Christ, Creator, Redeemer, and Savior,
Of heaven and earth and seas, of angels and of men
Whom we confess to be both God and Man,
Who didst come in order to save sinners,
Thyself without sin, taking the appearance of sin.
Among this poor flock, Thou didst visit the Canaanite woman and
Mary Magdalen.

From the same table Thou didst nourish the one with the crumbs of
the Divine Word, the other with Thy inebriating cup.
While Thou art seated at the typical feast in the house of Simon
the Leper.
The Pharisee murmurs, while the woman weeps, conscious of her
guilt.

The sinner despises his fellow-sinner, Thou, sinless one hearest
the prayer of the penitent, cleanses her from stains, lovest her
so as to make her beautiful.

She embraces the feet of her Lord, washes them with her tears,
dries them with her hair: washing and wiping them, she anoints
them with sweet ointment, and covers them with kisses.

Such, O Wisdom of the Father, is the banquet that delights Thee!
Though born of a Virgin, Thou cost not disdain to be touched by a
sinful woman.

The Pharisee invited Thee but it is Mary that gives Thee a feast.
Thou forgivest much to her that loves much, and that falls not
again into sin.

From seven devils cost Thou free her by Thy sevenfold Spirit.
To her, when Thou risest from the dead, Thou showest Thyself first
of all.

By her, O Christ. Thou cost designate the Gentile Church, the
stranger whom Thou callest to the children's table;

Who, at the feast of the Law and at the feast of grace, is
despised by the pride of Pharisees, and harassed by leprous
heresy.

Thou knowest what manner of woman she is, it is because she is a
sinner that she touches Thee, and because she longs for pardon.
What could she have, poor sick one, without receiving it, and
without the physician assisting her?

O King of kings, rich unto all, save us, wash away all the stains
of our sins, O Thou the hope and glory of the saints.

RESPONSORY
Congratulate me, all ye that love the Lord; for He whom I sought
appeared to me: *and while I wept at the tomb I saw my Lord,
alleluia.

v. When the disciples withdrew, I did not withdraw, and being
kindled with the fire of His love, I burned with desire.

* And while.

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