St. Mary, whom Jesus converted, and who witnessed His last moments with Mary, His Mother, and St. John, was called Magdalene from town of Magdala in Galilee. Clement of Alexandria and others identify her with the woman who washed Jesus’ feet with her tears. Others regard her as Mary, the sister of Martha and Lazarus. She followed Jesus with other devout women during His Public Life. After His Resurrection, Jesus appeared first to Mary Magdalene and then to His Apostles.
It is an ancient tradition in Provence, France that St. Mary Magdalene or Mary the sister of Lazarus, together with Lazarus, Martha, and some other disciples of our Lord, being excelled by the Jews, put to sea and landed at Marseilles; and that St. Lazarus became the first Bishop of that See.
The feast of St. Mary Magdalene is celebrated by the Greeks as well as the Latins on this date. However, in the instructions given with the latest edition of the Roman Calendar, the Latin Church has stipulated that the feast is solely that of the woman to whom Christ appeared and not that of the sister of Lazarus or the penitent woman.
PRAYER: God, it was to St. Mary Magdalene before all others that Your Son committed the message of Easter joy. Through her intercession may we proclaim Christ as our living Lord and one day contemplate Him reigning glory. Amen.