MEDITATION ON THE RESURRECTION
THE LIFE OF MARY AS SEEN BY THE MYSTICS
St. Bridget of Sweden, Blessed Anne Emmerich,
St. Elizabeth of Schenau and Venerable Mother Mary of Agreda
Compiled by Raphael Brown
The sun had already set when the Blessed Virgin, St. John and the holy women returned to the Cenacle in Jerusalem late in the afternoon of Good Friday. Mary thanked John and her companions, for having remained with her throughout the Passion of her Son, and in His name, she promised them a special reward for having been so faithful. They acknowledged this favor by kissing her hands and asking for her blessing. Then they begged her to take some rest and food but Mary replied:
“My rest and consolation shall be to see my Son and Lord arisen from the dead. Yet you , my dear friends, must satisfy your needs, while I retire alone with my son John.”
The women, still filled with profound grief, discussed the terrible events, and withdrew to their rooms for the night.
At midnight, the Blessed Virgin and the holy women arose and prayed together for awhile under a lamp. At four in the morning of the Sabbath, St. John came to console Mary. She asked him to find Peter, speak to him kindly, and bring home to see her. John was also to offer friendly greetings to the other Apostles and to give them hope of pardon for having left their Master during His passion.
John met Peter coming to the Cenacle after having spent the night weeping and repenting in a cave near the Holy City. They found some of the Apostles and they all went to the Cenacle.
Peter alone went to see Mary first. Falling at her feet, he said with sobs of intense sorrow: ”I have sinned, dear Lady, I have sinned before my God and I have offended my Master and you!”
The Blessed Mother knelt beside him and said ”Let us ask pardon for your guilt from my Son and your Master.”
Next the other Apostles, weeping bitterly, presented themselves before Mary and asked her pardon for having forsaken her Son during His
sufferings. The very sight of her caused them to feel perfect contrition for their sins and renewed their love for their Master. Mary promised them that she will obtain pardon which they sought, and when they left her, they were inflamed with new fervor and strengthened by new grace.
The women continued throughout the Sabbath to pray and mourn with the Virgin Mary in the large hall of the Cenacle. The weak ones among them took a little nourishment, but the others fasted all day.
In the meantime, the Mother of God continued to witness in vision the actions of her divine Son after His death. She saw Him visit the Patriarchs and the souls of the Blessed in Limbo. And now she saw the Savior, in their company, hovering over the city while He showed them the various places where He had suffered. As they passed the Cenacle, Jesus directed their attention to the Blessed Virgin and said to them., “There is Mary, My Mother!’
Early on Easter morning at the very instant when the holy soul of Christ reentered and revived His sacred Body in the sepulcher, Mary experienced a mystical ecstasy in which her grief and sorrow were transmuted into ineffable joy and bliss. Just at that moment, after knocking, St. John stepped into her oratory and finding her in the midst of a heavenly splendor and utterly transfigured with supernatural exultation, he understood that His Lord had just then arisen from the tomb.
Meanwhile, the glorious body and soul of the Redeemer came forth from the Holy Sepluchre, standing with all the brilliance of His divinity, and the Risen Lord immediately showed Himself to His Blessed Mother, together with the saints and Patriarchs of the Old Testament. He was clothed in a long, white robe, with a mantle that waved gently in the breeze, as He advanced, reflecting all the colors of the rainbow, while His large wounds sparkled brightly.
Mary prostrated herself on the ground and humbly worshiped her Resurrected Son until He took her hand, raised her and drew her to Himself in a marvelous mystical embrace. Then, in an ecstasy of fervent joy and love, she heard a Voice saying to her “My beloved, ascend highter.” At this same instant, she was given a more profound and intimate vision of the Divinity than she had ever had before. Then He left to show Himself to Mary Magdalene.
(Scripture says Our Risen Lord appeared to Mary Magdalene and the other women, who went to the tomb to anoint His body. Mary Magdalene went and announced to the other disciple “I have seen the Lord.”)
Later Mary Magdalene and the others came to Mary and told her about Jesus’ appearing to them. She listened quietly and kindly (not telling them that He had appeared to her first) and strengthened their faith by quoting from the Scriptures about His Resurrection.
The other apostles came, too and to report to the Blessed Mother that they have seen the Lord but that Thomas refused to believe that the Master had risen. Mary assured them calmly that Thomas’ disbelief would, in the end, will be of great benefit to others and glorify God.
(Scripture says Our Lord appeared several more times to the Apostles and strengthened their faith and their love for him more and more.)