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Help Us See Jesus - Family Reflection Video

Help Us See Jesus - Family Reflection Video

Why pray?  |  Holy lives of inspiration

A newly ordained young priest fresh out of seminary was assigned to his first parish in a small, farming community. Each Sunday he preached exegetical sermons that had nothing to do with the lives of the people. In fact, over the years the village congregation had become quite patient and tolerant, gifted with the task of training young priests in the realities of Church life.

Months went by, and then one Sunday the elderly sacristan who prepared the sanctuary for the Mass left a note on the pulpit. “Read John 12:21.” That’s all it said, John 12:21. Well, the young priest arrived in the sanctuary to prepare for the morning’s Mass. He saw the note on the pulpit which read “John 12:21.” A curious thing to find in the pulpit, he thought. So, he quickly thumbed through his Bible and found the passage which read: Sir, we wish to see Jesus.” 

Mary Magdalene, from whom seven devils had been cast out, helped many people to see Jesus. All of His apostles but John fled. However, Mary Magdalene’s love emboldened her to remain faithful to the end. With The Blessed Virgin, she valiantly stood at the foot of the Cross. She witnessed how great a price He paid for her sins and how unbending is God’s love even for the fallen. She was privileged to accompany the body of the Redeemer to the tomb and remained there until all the others had gone.

Blinded by grief, she did not recognize the stranger in the garden, until He called her by name, “Mary.” The love with which He uttered her name pierced the fog of her grief like a bolt of lightning. She flung herself in grateful joy at his feet, crying out “Rabbouni! Master!”

The Risen Lord charged her to go to the apostles and tell them what she had seen. He made her the first official witness to His Resurrection and The apostle to the apostles.

Friends, every single one of us is here today or online because someone like Mary Magdalene loved our Lord so much, that they introduced us to Him. Most often it is a member of our family, or a few members of our extended family.

In my case it was our mother whose love for each of us was so faithful that no one ever questioned it. She bathed us, nursed us, cooked for us and fed us. Incredible homemade bread several times a week. Praying the Rosary daily, attending Mass every Sunday, keeping Holy days and Lent, were her ways of answering our unspoken desire, “We wish to see Jesus.” Over the years her faithful love for our Lord and His Blessed mother even converted her lumberjack of a husband. In the end, when I visited home in later years, I could hear them quietly praying the Rosary in their bedroom every night before retiring.

Remember, Mary Magdalene, apostle to the apostles, is the first of many women down the centuries who helped us see Jesus.


  • Father Willy's inspirational homily was recorded live this morning during Mass at the Father Peyton Center. Please view the video on our Facebook page. (You don't need a Facebook account to view.) 
  • To view Rosary prayer and Mass streaming live, please visit our Facebook page at 11:30 am EDT, Monday – Friday. Please invite your loved ones to join us too! (You don't need a Facebook account to view.) 

About Father Willy Raymond, C.S.C.

Father Willy Raymond, C.S.C. is President of Holy Cross Family Ministries. He entered Holy Cross Fathers in 1964. He earned a Bachelors in Philosophy from Stonehill College in 1967 and a Masters in Theology from the University of Notre Dame in 1971. In addition to English, Father Willy is conversant in French and Spanish. He's a native of Old Town, Maine and one of 12 children. He remains a diehard fan of the Boston Red Sox, even though he has served as Chaplain for the Los Angeles Dodgers.