Novena to St. Mary Magdalene – Day 5

Mary Magdalene, Who Went to Anoint Jesus' Body

The Apostles of the Resurrection invite you to pray with us a Novena to St. Mary Magdalene,
our Patron Saint, and the Apostle to the Apostles.

Day 5: Mary Magdalene, Who Went to Anoint Jesus' Body

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Scripture: Mark 16: 1 – 2

When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of James and Salome bought spices, so that they might go and anoint him. And very early on the first day of the week, when the sun had risen, they went to the tomb.


St. Mary Magdalene was a Jewish woman of faith, and so she spent that long Sabbath which followed Jesus’ crucifixion in prayer, fulfilling the rituals and obligations of her religion.  Perhaps that time of prayer and interaction with God brought her perspective concerning Jesus’ death.  Maybe she found peace and consolation in the rituals and was able to see more clearly the path before her.  Jesus was still dead, he still couldn’t lead the disciples physically any more, but she wasn’t completely in the dark anymore, she could see at least one step ahead of her now.  So St. Mary Magdalene and the other Mary bought spices and took them to the tomb to anoint Jesus’ body. This was one thing she could do, she could give Jesus a proper burial according to their customs.  It might seem like St. Mary Magdalene was still focused on death, but this was an important first step forward, being able to think of someone else, not just herself and her own grief. She continued to support Jesus, even when all hope seemed lost.


St. Mary Magdalene, you did not abandon your faith in your time of grief, instead you embraced it and allowed the rituals to bring you a first glimmer of light in the darkness. Pray for us, that we make call on God when all seems hopeless, that we may seek solace and strength in His Church and His Sacraments.

We offer this Novena today for those who do not know where to turn, that they may find the way, the truth and the life in Jesus.

Litany to Saint Mary Magdalene:

Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us.

Holy Trinity, who art one God, have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us.

Saint Mary Magdalene
From whom seven demons were cast out, pray for us.
To whom many sins were forgiven, pray for us.
Inflamed with the ardors of charitable love, pray for us.
Very pleasing to the Lord, pray for us.
Most dear to Jesus, pray for us.
Disciple of the Lord, pray for us.
Who faithfully remained at the Cross, pray for us.
When the other disciples had fled, pray for us.
Who followed Jesus even to the Tomb, pray for us.
Who went to anoint his broken body, pray for us.
To whom the Angels spoke, pray for us.
You who first among the disciples were chosen to see the risen Christ, pray for us.
Apostle to the Apostles, pray for us.
Protectoress of the Order of Preachers, pray for us.
Gentle helper of penitents, pray for us.
So that we may merit to share one day the joy of being in His everlasting presence, pray for us.
Patroness of the Apostles of the Resurrection, pray for us.

Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, forgive us Lord.
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, hear us Lord,
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, have pity on us Lord.

Pray for us, Saint Mary Magdalene,
That we may become worthy of the promises of Christ.


Mary_Magdalene_by_Constantin_Tzanes_17th_c-scaled, public domain via Wikimedia Commons