Daily Gospel Reflection – Tuesday in the Octave of Easter
Bishop Robert BarronApril 19, 2022
Tuesday in the Octave of Easter
Gospel: Mt 28:8-15
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.
*United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
Bishop Robert Barron
Friends, in today’s Gospel, we find Mary Magdalene weeping by the tomb of the risen Lord. She then sees Jesus and doesn’t recognize him immediately.
In a wonderful detail, she thinks he’s the gardener. In the book of Genesis, God, the gardener of Eden, walked with his creatures in easy friendship. Sin, the sundering of the loop of grace, put an end to those intimate associations.
Throughout the history of salvation, God had been trying to reestablish friendship. Through the death of Jesus, through that tomb placed right in the garden, he accomplished his goal. So now, in Christ, he appears again as a gardener. “Jesus said to her, ‘Mary!’ She turned and said to him in Hebrew, ‘Rabbouni.’”
Then Jesus says: “Stop holding on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers . . .” The not clinging has to do with the call to proclaim. The idea is not to hang on to Jesus but to announce what he has accomplished. The content of the proclamation is, once again, that we have become the intimates of God: “My Father and your Father . . . my God and your God.”