my rabbouni (see jn 20:16)
“Jesus said to her, ‘Mary!’ She turned to Him and said [in Hebrew], ‘Rabbouni!’ (meaning ‘Teacher’).” —John 20:16
Jesus had told Mary of Bethany to keep her perfume for His burial (Jn 12:7; Mk 14:8). Perhaps Jesus had told something similar to Mary Magdalene, for she came to Jesus’ tomb to anoint His buried body on the third day after His death (see Lk 24:1, 10). Mary was determined to find His body and anoint it.
Then she saw the risen Jesus and heard His voice. Mary Magdalene’s elated response, “Rabbouni,” is rich in meaning. Rabbouni means Teacher (Jn 20:16), as does the similar word, Rabbi. The homilist at today’s Mass mentioned some other meanings brought out by the use of “Rabbouni” instead of Rabbi:
- “My dear Master, the Master of my soul” (the word Rabbouni indicates a personal, emotional connection).
- “My Master, Who is close to my heart.”
- “You are the One for me, my Master.”
Mary Magdalene was so overcome by the presence of Jesus, her Rabbouni, that her perfume and spices were forgotten and are no longer mentioned in the text of the Gospel. This is similar to what happened with the Samaritan woman at the well, who was so mesmerized by her encounter with Jesus that she left her water jar at the well to go tell others about Jesus (see Jn 4:7, 28). Those things which were formerly our life are no longer important when we encounter the risen Jesus. During this Octave of Easter, ask the risen Jesus to reveal Himself to you. Encounter Jesus as your Rabbouni, the Master Who is close to your heart. Let His risen presence transform you into a fearless disciple.
Prayer: Jesus, my Rabbouni, I am all Yours. Raise me to a new level of risen joy with You this Easter season.
Promise: “You must reform and be baptized, each one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ, that your sins may be forgiven; then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” —Acts 2:38
Praise: Praise You, Jesus, my Lord, my God, my All.
Reference: (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)
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