The Gospel Today
Memorial of Saint Mary Magdalene
Jn. 2:1-2, 11-18
On the first day of the week,
Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early in the morning,
while it was still dark,
and saw the stone removed from the tomb.
So she ran and went to Simon Peter
and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and told them,
“They have taken the Lord from the tomb,
and we don’t know where they put him.”
Mary stayed outside the tomb weeping.
And as she wept, she bent over into the tomb
and saw two angels in white sitting there,
one at the head and one at the feet
where the Body of Jesus had been.
And they said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?”
She said to them, “They have taken my Lord,
and I don’t know where they laid him.”
When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus there,
but did not know it was Jesus.
Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?
Whom are you looking for?”
She thought it was the gardener and said to him,
“Sir, if you carried him away,
tell me where you laid him,
and I will take him.”
Jesus said to her, “Mary!”
She turned and said to him in Hebrew,
“Rabbouni,” which means Teacher.
Jesus said to her,
“Stop holding on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father.
But go to my brothers and tell them,
‘I am going to my Father and your Father,
to my God and your God.’”
Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples,
“I have seen the Lord,”
and then reported what he told her.
Reflection (Sem. Edgar Calma):
My gospel sharing would revolve around the theme: Searching and finding Jesus in the empty place. In this current age of technology, one of the important gadgets the most people would have is the cell phone. I recall the first time that I was able to own a cell phone, a brand new one and had it misplaced somewhere a few days later, was really a terrible experience for me. I did not know what to do. I was blaming myself for not keeping and securing it properly. In fact, I felt I was at a lost because all the contact details of my family, friends and co-workers were stored in the said unit. So, what I did was to search it inside my room by removing and re-arranging all the things and stuff to allow me to find my precious cell phone. All of us in one way or another have experienced searching for something or someone and finding it along the way. And experience will also tell us that the process of searching is very difficult and challenging. Sometimes it is also very painful and frustrating, especially, when what we are looking for in not really there. The place is empty of things that we are looking for. In life, there will be situations that we would be searching and looking for something or someone in an empty place. Not even a glimpse of hope is there for us to find what we are looking for. But just like Mary of Magdala, it was in the empty tomb that she was able to find and recognize Christ, when Jesus uttered the word Rabbouni which means teacher.
I believe that life is an on-going search for meaning and happiness. I am exerting a lot of my efforts to ensure that I will be successful in life. Before I entered the seminary, I am very much focused with my career and how I can climb up and grow in the corporate world. But along the way, I felt there was something lacking in me or a sense of emptiness. It is in this feeling of emptiness that I need to search and find Jesus through prayer. And I think the key in searching for something in an empty place is silence. For it is in the silence of my heart that I can hear the voice of Jesus telling me “I am with you, even in this empty place in your heart”