Saturday, February 23, 2008
Penance of Mary Magdalene, El Greco,1450
I joined the Catholic Church, and hence got introduced to the power of the Communion of the Saints, at the same time as the book "Da Vinci" Code was initially published. I stayed away from thinking much about Mary Magdalene. She seemed a little dangerous and highly charged. I didn't think for a second that she founded a secret family in France. Yet who was she really? A reformed prostitute or just a very sick rich woman "who had seven demons." It just seemed safer to stay away and hang out with more socially approved saints, such as Saint Francis of Assisi.
This Lent, I realized that I've been selling myself short but skipping out on devotion to the woman who first witnessed Christ's resurrection. I've prayed to her a lot for help with the instant conversion of sin that she experienced and for her faith in the resurrection.
This painting by the great El Greco shows her in this light, a sincere contrite heart who is about to experience the great blessing of faith.
Prayer: Mary Magdalene, pray for us. May we share in your penance this Lent. May we experience the fullness of your joy and faith this Easter Morning!