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Pope at General Audience: Mary Magdalen as a symbol of Christian hope

At this morning's General Audience, Pope Francis continued his weekly catechesis on hope, this time reflecting on Mary Magdalen as an example.  Calling her "the apostle of hopeâ?, the pope emphasized that just as she was called to the tomb of Jesus, so too does Jesus call "each of us by name.â? By listening and accepting this encounter, he says, it "transforms our world and brings undying hope.â? SUMMARY OF POPE'S CATECHESIS IN ENGLISH Dear Brothers and Sisters: In our catechesis on Christian hope, we now reflect on Mary Magdalen as an apostle of the hope brought by the Gospel.  Saint John tells us on Easter morning Mary had gone to the tomb of Jesus; she saw that it was empty, and returned to tell this news to Peter and the other disciples. Returning to the tomb, yet still not understanding what had happened, Mary encounters the Risen Lord, but does not recognize him until he calls her by name.  This first appearance of Jesus after rising from the dead is thus something intensely personal. We know that just as he did with Mary Magdalen, so too Jesus calls each of us by name and fills us with joy at his presence.  Our encounter with him brings freedom and opens up new vistas of life; it transforms our world and brings undying hope. The risen Lord tells Mary not to cling to him, but to go and tell the good news of his resurrection to the others.  Mary Magdalen thus becomes the apostle of Christian hope. By her prayers, may we be encounter anew the risen Lord, who calls us by name, turns our sorrow into joy, and sends us forth to proclaim by our lives that he is truly risen  I greet the English-speaking pilgrims and visitors taking part in todayâ??s Audience, particularly the groups from England, Ireland, Swaziland, Hong Kong, Indonesia, India, the Philippines, Vietnam, Canada and the United States of America. In the joy of the Risen Christ, I invoke upon you and your families the loving mercy of God our Father. May the Lord bless you all! JC CTV FL -BN Up:JRB