"Magdalen with Jesus",
St Mary Magdelen
Feast day: July 22
She is called "the Penitent". St. Mary was given the name 'Magdalen'
because, though a Jewish girl, she lived in a Gentile town called Magdale,
in northern Galilee, and her culture and manners were those of a Gentile.
St. Luke records that she was a notorious sinner, and had seven devils
removed from her. She was present at Our Lords' Crucifixion, and with
Joanna and Mary, the mother of James and Salome, at Jesus' empty tomb.
Fourteen years after Our Lord's death, St. Mary was put in a boat by
the Jews without sails or oars - along with Sts. Lazarus and Martha,
St. Maximin (who baptized her), St. Sidonius ("the man born blind"),
her maid Sera, and the body of St. Anne, the mother of the Blessed Virgin.
They were sent drifting out to sea and landed on the shores of Southern
France, where St. Mary spent the rest of her life as a contemplative
in a cave known as Sainte-Baume. She was given the Holy Eucharist daily
by angels as her only food, and died when she was 72. St. Mary was transported
miraculously, just before she died, to the chapel of St. Maximin, where
she received the last sacraments.
More about this saint: St. Mary Magdalen (Feast day - July 22) Mary
Magdalen was well known as a sinner when she first saw Our Lord. She
was very beautiful and very proud, but after she met Jesus, she felt
great sorrow for her evil life. When Jesus went to supper at the home
of a rich man named Simon, Mary came to weep at His feet. Then with her
long beautiful hair, she wiped His feet dry and anointed them with expensive
perfume. Some people were surprised that Jesus let such a sinner touch
Him, but Our Lord could see into Mary's heart, and He said: "Many sins
are forgiven her, because she has loved very much." Then to Mary He said
kindly, "Your faith has made you safe; go in peace." From then on, with
the other holy women, Mary humbly served Jesus and His Apostles. When
Our Lord was crucified, she was there at the foot of His cross, unafraid
for herself, and thinking only of His sufferings. No wonder Jesus said
of her: "She has loved much." After Jesus' body had been placed in the
tomb, Mary went to anoint it with spices early Easter Sunday morning.
Not finding the Sacred Body, she began to weep, and seeing someone whom
she thought was the gardener, she asked him if he knew where the Body
of her beloved Master had been taken. But then the person spoke in a
voice she knew so well: "Mary!" It was Jesus, risen from the dead! He
had chosen to show Himself first to Mary Magdalen, the repentent sinner.