Encounter

Tuesday of the First Week of Easter


I must apologize, I forgot to take my voice recorder to church with me today. I only remembered as I was reading the gospel. But you can hear my homily and all of mass via the church YouTube channel here: St. John the Evangelist Waynesboro. I will make sure to remember to take it with me tomorrow.

That aside, Mary Magdalene came to Jesus’ tomb to grieve. Her loss was personal. It was personal for all of them. But the lifting of that grief, her encounter with the Risen Jesus, had to be personal as well. I am surprised her seeing two angels at his grave didn’t shake her more that it merely received a passing mention in the gospel passage, as though she was accustomed to seeing angels all the time.

There he was standing right in front of her, but she was too broken up to notice. Then he called her by name. It was only then that she recognized him. Of course she must have already known what his voice sounded like, for her to recognize him. Recognition presupposes cognition, prior knowledge before it can be re-cognized. And as we will hear in the gospel readings for the rest of the week, Jesus encountered others similarly in a most personal way.

We who encounter him today have not known him in the flesh, as did the first disciples now long gone. But it is by their going forth and telling us that we have come to know him. So he sends us, once we have encountered him risen from the dead, to go tell the others. If you haven’t yet met the Risen Jesus, listen. He is calling you by name. If you have met him, you must go and tell the others.

This mass was offered for the repose of +Gertrude Hughes.

Rolo B Castillo © 2020