Mary Magdalene: Authorized Witness to the Resurrection

God chose Mary Magdalene to be the first witness and the first proclaimer of the most important statement in all of eternity: the Resurrection of Jesus. According to Merriam-Webster, a proclamation is an official statement or announcement made by a person in power or by a government; in other words, the proclaimer of an official statement comes with power or is vested with recognizable authority by one in power. God is making a statement not only in and through the birth, death and resurrection of Jesus; God is also making a statement in the way he chose to proclaim the Resurrection. The very fact that the great unfolding of God’s new and redeemed creation was first witnessed and proclaimed by Mary Magdalene in and of itself is meant to be our first glimpse of God’s redemption of every aspect of creation we have corrupted. The idea that Mary—a woman, one perceived to be inferior to man and legally a non admissible witness in a human court at that time is the one authorized by the risen Jesus to be first to proclaim his resurrection truly disrupts the prevailing norms of power. Resurrection is, thus, the ultimate disruption of all norms shaped by human power and privilege; it is the living testimony of deliverance and justice hoped for by all who are pushed into the pit of darkness and oppression, starting with the restored dignity of God’s image in the woman.