Wednesday, July 22, 2015

"Have you seen him whom my soul loves" Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint John 20:1-2.11-18.

Song of Songs 3:1-4a. 
The bride says: On my bed at night I sought him whom my heart loves - I sought him but I did not find him.
I will rise then and go about the city; in the streets and crossings I will seek Him whom my heart loves. I sought him but I did not find him.
The watchmen came upon me as they made their rounds of the city: Have you seen him whom my heart loves?
I had hardly left them when I found him whom my heart loves.

Psalms 63(62):2.3-4.5-6.8-9. 
O God, you are my God whom I seek;
for you my flesh pines and my soul thirsts
like the earth, parched, lifeless and without water.

Thus have I gazed toward you in the sanctuary
to see your power and your glory,
For your kindness is a greater good than life;
my lips shall glorify you.

Thus will I bless you while I live;
lifting up my hands, I will call upon your name.
As with the riches of a banquet shall my soul be satisfied,
and with exultant lips my mouth shall praise you.

You indeed are my help,
and in the shadow of your wings I shout for joy.
My soul clings fast to you;
your right hand upholds me.

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint John 20:1-2.11-18.
On the first day of the week, Mary of Magdala 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."
But 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 of Magdala went and announced to the disciples, "I have seen the Lord," and what he told her.

"Have you seen him whom my soul loves" (Sg 3,3)

At this point we must stop and reflect upon the ardent love in the heart of this woman who would not leave the Lord's grave even after his own disciples had gone away. She continued seeking him whom she could not find; in tears she kept searching; and, afire with love, she yearned for him whom she believed had been removed. Thus it happened that she alone saw him, she who had remained behind to seek him, simply because a truly good act involves the virtue of perseverance. For the lips of Truth itself have said: “Whoever perseveres to the end shall be saved” (Mt 10,22)…

Holy desires grow with delay: if they fade through delay they are no desires at all. Such must be the love that inflames anyone who is reaching out for the truth. This is why David says: “My soul thirsts for the living God; when shall I come and behold the face of God?” (Ps 41[42],3). And the Church says in the Song of Songs, “I am wounded by love”, and again, “My soul failed me” (Sg 2,5). “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom do you seek?” She is asked the cause of her sorrow so that her longing may increase, for when she names the one she seeks she burns with yet greater love for him.

“Jesus said to her: Mary.” First of all he called her by the title common to all her sex, and she did not recognize him. Now he calls her by her own name, as if to say plainly: “Now recognize the one who recognizes you. For I know you, not in some general way along with other people, but personally.” Addressed by her own name, Mary recognizes her maker and straightway calls him “Rabboni”, that is “Teache”. Outwardly it was he who was the object of her search, but inwardly it was he who was teaching her to search for him.

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