Roman Catholics celebrate Thursday, July 22, the Feast of Saint Mary Magdalene (Santa Maria Magdalena), the sister of Saints Martha and Lazarus, who, according to the Holy Bible, were close friends of Jesus.
Commemorative masses in her honor will be offered at the St. Mary Magdalene Diocesan Shrine and Parish in Pilillia, Rizal which has been classified as a national historical treasure by the National Historical Institute.
The diocesan shrine keeps two sacred relics of St. Mary Magdalene, a bone (first class relic) and a piece of cloth (second class relic).
Special masses will also be held in Kawit, Cavite, Negros Occidental, Palanan, Isabela, and in Calumpit, Bulacan,
A devoted follower of Jesus, St. Mary Magdalene, who was also known as Mary of Magdala, was mentioned in the Sacred Scriptures as the woman, who “filled with repentance, washed Jesus’ feet with her tears, dried them with her hair, and anointed them with expensive oil.” Church officials said the Jewish woman was a legendary example of God’s mercy and grace.
When Jesus was crucified, she stood with the Blessed Mother and St. John at the foot of the cross and remained until Jesus’ body was taken down and laid in a tomb. She was also the first recorded witness of the Resurrection of Christ.