Feast of Saint Mary Magdalene

Mary Magdalene is one of the most controversial of Christ's followers. She has variously been viewed as Jesus' favourite, or even his wife; a wealthy patroness and supporter of Christ's mission; and others are adamant that she was a repentant prostitute. She is mentioned by name at least a dozen times in the Gospels, which is more than most of the apostles.

The four Gospels all agree that Mary was originally a great sinner, and that Jesus cast seven demons out of her, but they are not specific as to what sort of "demons" these were. During the middle ages, it became generally believed that she had been sexually immoral before meeting Christ, but this view is not supported by scripture. Most scholars now believe that Mary Magdalene was part of a semi-permanent entourage that followed Jesus as he went about his ministry.

Uniquely among the followers of Christ, Mary is expressly identified as having been present at three key events - Jesus' crucifixion, his burial, and the discovery of the empty tomb. She was also the first person to whom Jesus appeared after the resurrection, and the first to preach about that miracle. It is thought by some scholars that her influence in the years following Jesus' death rivaled that of Peter.  

Perhaps unfairly famous for having once been a prostitute, Mary's true claim to fame is that unlike the male followers of Jesus, who ran away after he was condemned to death, Mary Magdalene stayed by his side throughout his ordeal.

 

9:30 am Sung Eucharist (Contemporary Rite)

Choral music by Derek Holman and Andrea Gabrieli

 

11:00 am Solemn Eucharist (Traditional Rite)

Choral music by William Byrd and Andrea Gabrieli

 

7:00 pm Solemn Evensong & Devotions 

Choral music by William Byrd, Andrea Gabrieli and E.C. Bairstow