Today the Church celebrates the Feast day of St. Mary Magdalene, a woman who encountered Jesus, followed him and stood at the foot of the Cross when He was crucified.
In the Gospel of John, we read how she went and found the tomb empty and wept, thinking that the body of Christ was taken. But no…Jesus appears to her and calls her by name. She runs to tell the disciples…”I have seen the Lord!”.
We have seen the empty tomb in Jerusalem. It is located within the Basilica of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem. Today, it looks very different from the time Mary Magdalene saw it; but it is The Tomb! Constantine the Great built the Basilica in the 4th century and preserved it. Today, the tomb is within a small edifice similar to a tiny chapel. One has to bend down to enter. Upon entering, there is space for 4-5 persons…you can kneel facing the marble slab covering the place where the body of Jesus laid before His Resurrection. Lit candles give some light and a silver icon of the Resurrected Christ hangs above. When we knelt and prayed; we both thanked God for this opportunity – this gift – the gift of His Death and Resurrection! And then all those we love and care for, all ou friends and people we know and carry in our hearts came to mind…we placed them and our intentions on that marble slab…in the Tomb! Lord – thy will be done!