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He Knows You

First Reading: Acts 2:36-41

On the day of Pentecost, Peter said to the Jewish people,
“Let the whole house of Israel know for certain
that God has made him both Lord and Christ,
this Jesus whom you crucified.”

Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart,
and they asked Peter and the other Apostles,
“What are we to do, my brothers?”
Peter said to them,
“Repent and be baptized, every one of you,
in the name of Jesus Christ, for the forgiveness of your sins;
and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
For the promise is made to you and to your children
and to all those far off,
whomever the Lord our God will call.”
He testified with many other arguments, and was exhorting them,
“Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.”
Those who accepted his message were baptized,
and about three thousand persons were added that day.

Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 33:4-5, 18-19, 20 AND 22

R. (5b) The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.
Upright is the word of the LORD,
and all his works are trustworthy.
He loves justice and right;
of the kindness of the LORD the earth is full.
R. The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.
See, the eyes of the LORD are upon those who fear him,
upon those who hope for his kindness,
To deliver them from death
and preserve them in spite of famine.
R. The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.
Our soul waits for the LORD,
who is our help and our shield.
May your kindness, O LORD, be upon us
who have put our hope in you.
R. The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.

Gospel: John 20:11-18

Mary Magdalene 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 went and announced to the disciples,
“I have seen the Lord,”
and then reported what he had told her.

NAB

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Have you ever experienced deep, soul-piercing grief? Perhaps it was not getting the dream job, a pregnancy lost, a tragic family death, or the ending of a relationship. Grief can sometimes blind us to the reality in front of us. It can grip us like violent ocean waves during a storm, and pull us under so quickly and easily. I think of that when I imagine Mary Magdalene in this Gospel passage.

Crying, distraught, maybe even hysterical, Mary was a hot mess. Not only did one of her closest friends die, but now the body is missing?! If I went to the graves of grandparents only to find them missing I would be freaking the freak out. While we do not know a lot about Mary Magdalene from Scripture, we know she was with Jesus when many others abandoned as He hung upon the cross. She was with her friend when He needed her most.

Through her tears and hysterics, she couldn’t see the reality in front of her, Jesus. Blinded by pain and sadness, Mary didn’t realize the gardner was Jesus until He called her by name, “Mary.” Mary was consumed by her pain and grief. It blinded her to the reality that was lovingly looking at her, Jesus.

All of us have different stories. We all will or have experienced loss, pain, suffering, and grief. But do we let those big feelings and emotions consume, overtake us? Once Mary realized it was Jesus speaking to her, that He was with her all along, everything changed. She hurried and went to tell the disciples what the Lord had said to her. When we realize we are not alone on the journey, it can change the outcome of our story.

Even when you feel most alone, Jesus is right there with you. Don’t let the big feelings of whatever of you’re facing blind you to that reality. He sees you and knows before you ever utter a word.

Take ten minutes today of silence. Breathe deeply and imagine yourself as Mary at the tomb. See Jesus call you by name. Rest in that promise that our God knows and sees you no matter what. What does He say to you? Listen and respond like Mary.

photo credit

Patty Hubbard is a runner, big dreamer, youth minister ordinaire, and recovering know-it-all. When not fundraising for World Youth Day, she is learning to find grace in all things. You can find out more about her here.

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