Commemoration of St. Mary Magdalene raised to a Feast
VATICAN/ HOLY LAND – The celebration of the memorial will be raised to a Feast in the Roman calendar. The decision, which was made by Pope Francis, was announced in a decree of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments on June 10, 2016. The news is very a significant one for the faithful of the Holy Land, who will be able to celebrate the Feast in the Sanctuary of Magdala, which was inaugurated two years earlier on the shores of the Sea of Galilee, in the native town of St. Mary Magdalene.
On June 10, 2016, the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments published a decree signed on the day of the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart, through which the commemoration of St. Mary Magdalene, celebrated on July 22nd, will be raised to a Feast for the Universal Church.
Bishop Arthur Roche, the Secretary of the Congregation, explains that this decision means that one “should reflect more deeply on the dignity of women, the New Evangelization, and the greatness of the mystery of Divine Mercy.” Three elements that make St. Mary Magdalene an example to follow.
The news was welcomed with great joy in the Holy Land, where the archeological park of Magdala was inaugurated two years earlier, the native town of St. Mary Magdalene on the shores of the Sea of Galilee. It’s also the same place where His Beatitude Fouad Twal, Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, consecrated Duc in altum Church on May 28, 2014. The Sanctuary is a place where Mary Magdalene and the group of women who followed and served Jesus are honored in a distinctive way.
Although the Feast of St. Mary Magdalene was already celebrated as a solemnity on July 22nd, the celebration from this year on will have a special importance with the participation of various faithful from the different parishes of the Catholic Church in the Holy Land.
This year and for pastoral reasons, the Feast will be celebrated on the following day, on July 23rd.