Sunday, July 08, 2018
'Reanalysing that reputation that she had we can see she was probably a woman of greater social status, higher social status, a woman of wealth who accompanied Jesus'
If there's a feminist figure from the Bible for the #MeToo era, it could very well be Mary Magdalene.
The major character in the life of Jesus was long maligned in the West and portrayed as a reformed former prostitute. But scholars have adopted a different approach more recently, viewing her as a strong, independent woman who supported Jesus financially and spiritually.
The New Testament tells how Jesus cast demons out of her. She then accompanied Jesus in his ministry around the Galilee, before witnessing his crucifixion, burial and resurrection in Jerusalem, which is being commemorated by Christians this week and next. The Roman Catholic Church and Western Christian churches observe Easter on Sunday, Eastern Orthodox Christians a week later.
Pope Francis took the biggest step yet to rehabilitate Mary Magdalene's image by declaring a major feast day in her honour on 22 June. His 2016 decree put the woman who first proclaimed Jesus' resurrection on par with the liturgical celebrations of the male apostles.
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