Sunday, July 23, 2017

Upper Room Celebrates Feast of St. Mary of Magdala, Apostle to the Apostles, Co-Presiders Kim Panaro ARCWP and Bridget Mary Meehan ARCWP


Kim Panara ARCWP and I co-presided at this beautiful liturgy with the Upper Room Inclusive Catholic Community in honor of St. Mary of Magdala, apostle to the apostles.














LITURGY OF THE WORD

First Reading: The Gospel of Mary

Jesus said,
  "Go then, preach the good news about the Kin-dom. Do not lay down any rule or law beyond what I determined for you, or else you might be dominated by it."
After the Risen One had said these things, he departed from them.
     But they were distressed and wept greatly. "How are we going to go out to the rest of the world to announce the good news about the Realm of the child of true Humanity?" they said. "If they did not spare him, how will they spare us?"
     Then Mary stood up. She greeted them all, addressing her brothers and sisters, "Do not weep and be distressed nor let your hearts be irresolute. For his grace will be with you all and will shelter you. Rather we should praise his greatness, for he has prepared us and made us true human beings."
      When Mary had said these things, she turned their heart toward the Good, and they began to debate about the words of Jesus.
     Peter said to Mary, "Sister, we know that Jesus loved you more than all other women. Tell us the words of the Teacher that you remember, the things which you know that we don't because we haven't heard them." 
     Mary responded, "I will teach you about what is hidden from you." And she began to speak these words to them.
     She said, "I saw the Teacher in a vision and I said to him, 'Teacher, I saw you today in a vision.'
He answered me, 'How wonderful you are for not wavering at seeing me! For where the mind is, there is the treasure.'
     These are the inspired words of Mary of Magdala


All: Thanks be to God

ALLELUIA!    (sung)

Gospel:

Reader:  A reading from  the  Gospel John 20;13-18

“Meanwhile, Mary stood weeping beside the tomb. Even as she wept, she stooped to peer inside, and there she saw two angels in dazzling robes. One was seated at the head and the other at the foot of the place where Jesus’ body had lain.

“They asked her, ‘Why are you weeping?’

“She answered them, ‘Because they have taken away my Rabbi, and I don’t know where they have put him.’

“No sooner had she said this, than she turned around and caught sight of Jesus standing there, but she didn’t know it was Jesus. He asked her ‘why are you weeping! For whom are you looking?’

“She supposed it was the gardener, so she said, ‘Please, if you’re the one who carried him away, tell me where you’ve laid him and I will take him away.’

“Jesus said to her, ‘Mary!’

“She turned to him and said, ‘Rabboni!’—which means ‘Teacher.’

“Jesus then said, ‘Don’t hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to Abba God. Rather, go to the sisters and brothers and tell them ‘I’m ascending to my Abba and to your Abba, my God and your God!’

“Then Mary went to the disciples. ‘I have seen the Teacher!’ she announced. Then she reported what he had said to her” (Jn 20:13–18)


HOMILY Starter:




The good news is that like Mary of Magdala, we are not afraid! The spirit of Wisdom Sophia is moving through us as we live the Gospel of justice, partnership and equality in our inclusive communities and ministries. We are in the process of healing a centuries old misogyny as we ordain women to minister in inclusive communities in the Roman Catholic Church today!



HOMILY Starter: Upper Room, July 23, 2017

This story is about love, relationship and courage.

In the Gospel of Mary, Mary of Magdala tells the disciples to proclaim the Gospel without fear.  She assures them of the Risen One’s Presence. In the second part she shares a vsiion she has received. Peter and Andrew react with scorn to her revelations, but Levi defends her: “Peter, thou hast ever been of hasty temper. Now I see thou dost exercise theyself against the woman like the adversaries. But if the teacher has made her worthy, who then are you to reject her?

Jesus treated women as equals.  The Risen One appeared first to Mary of Magdala, the apostle to the aposltes. Both the Gospel of John and Mary testify to a close relationship and Mary’s authoritative role in proclaiming the liberating message of the Gospel without fear.

The Gospel of Mary reflects the debate about women’s roles that continues today in our insititutional church.

Our international women priests movement is a justice movement that honors women’s call to proclaim the Gospel and preside at the Eucharistic table in inclusive communities of equals. Pope Francis has initiated a commission to study women deacons that could be a first step toward the full equality of women.  Some bishops, even Vatican Curia leaders, are engaging in conversations or asking for information about our priestly ministry.  In  May 2016, Janice Sevre Duszynska and Christine Moreira  had an open, friendly conversation with a Vatican monsignor when they delivered a petition in support of women priests. Mary Theresa recently had a friendly conversation with the Bishop of Albany.

The good news is that like Mary of Magdala, we are not afraid! The spirit of Wisdom Sophia is moving through us as we live the Gospel of justice, partnership and equality in our inclusive communities and ministries. We are in the process of healing a centuries old misogyny as we ordain women to minister in inclusive communities in the Roman Catholic Church today in loving relationships with courage. 

Question for Reflection and Sharing:
What challenges do we face as we lead the church toward justice and equality in our local area?



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