John 19:16-17 reads as follows: “Jesus said to her, ‘Mary.’ She turned and said to Him in Aramaic, ‘Rabboni!’ (which means Teacher). Jesus said to her, “Do not cling to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father, but go to My brothers and say to them, ‘I am ascending to My Father and your Father, to My God and your God.”
The first Christian holiday to be celebrated is the Resurrection of Jesus. In the soft morning light Mary Magdalene is the first person to encounter Jesus just after He has risen from the dead. Her confusion is understandable, and how do we comprehend Jesus’ curious words, “Do not cling to me?” Leaning on the insight of theologian Joe Heschmeyer, we can ponder Jesus’ words in a new way. Jesus, our Gentle Healer, knows exactly what each of us need in order to deepen and grow our faith. Mary already believed that Jesus was resurrected; unlike Thomas, she didn’t need to touch Jesus to believe. Instead, Jesus commissions her to go tell the good news to His disciples. The first page of Mary’s new story of faith opens to her obedience in telling the disciples about Jesus’ resurrection. May the ears and eyes of our hearts be open to perceive His new story for us.