Dear Father Angelo,
I would like to ask you two questions about the Resurrection of Jesus and the resurrection of the body.
Since the Gospels speak of Jesus appearing to the pious women and His disciples after He rose from the dead there is no mention of the fact that He appeared to his Mother Mary however, how is it possible that this did not happen?
When the resurrection of the flesh takes place the dead will take their bodies back, but what age will they be?
Will they be the same age as when they died or will they all be the same age?
I hope my questions have been clearly formulated and thank you very much for the answers you will give me.
The Priest’s answer
1. Father M.-J. Lagrange, founder of the Biblical School of Jerusalem, writes about the apparitions of the risen Christ:
“Popular piety of the Church holds for certain that the risen Christ appeared first of all to His Most Holy Mother, the one who had fed Him with her milk, helped Him grow as a child, introduced Him to the world on the occasion of the wedding in Cana and who hardly appears anymore except at the foot of His cross.
However, Jesus consecrated thirty years of his hidden life exclusively to her and to St. Joseph: how could she not have had for herself alone the first instant of the hidden in God life of her Only Begotten?
But this did not affect the promulgation of the Gospel, since Mary belonged to a transcendental order according to which, she is associated with the fatherhood of God the Father as she is in fact the mother of Jesus.
Therefore, having to obey this instruction given by the Holy Spirit, let us leave this first apparition of Jesus to contemplative souls.
It must certainly not have been as dramatically touching as the apparition of Christ to Mary of Magdala “(The Gospel of Jesus Christ, p. 577).
2. The fact that this event is not mentioned in the Gospels does not mean that it did not occur.
According to Father Lagrange, the fact that Jesus appeared first to His mother after the Resurrection is completely congruent.
However, he adds: “But this did not affect the promulgation of the Gospel” as if to say that this testimony was not useful for the preaching of the Gospel because it could have been taken as a biased testimony.
3. There are various considerations that lead us to believe that Jesus appeared first to His Mother Mary after the resurrection.
First of all, we have to consider that Mary remained steadfast in the Lord despite anything.
Since Our Lady kept Jesus’ teachings in her heart, She also kept those teachings related to the announcement of His Resurrection.
It is even plausible to think that – since she saw the pain and perhaps also the despair of the apostles and disciples – she prayed for the Lord to anticipate the moment of His Resurrection.
4. Secondly we must consider the fact that Our Lady did not go with the other women to the tomb on the morning of the Resurrection of Jesus.
It would have been strange, given the customs of the time, that other women had gone to the tomb to embalm Jesus in Mary’s absence.
As a consequence we can therefore logically infer that Mary did not go with them because she was already informed of the Resurrection of Jesus.
And one can also think that if Jesus allowed Himself to be detained by the pious women, He also let Himself be detained for a long time by His mother so that while they were on their way, Mary was with Him instead.
5. Furthermore if Jesus first appeared to the pious women (and above all to Magdalene) because they were more faithful than the other disciples, how can we not think that He first appeared to Our Lady who was the most faithful of all?
6. Finally, just as Our Lady participated in a unique way in Christ’s passion because her pain was equal to the love she had for her Son, so she deserved to take part in an equally unique way in Christ’s Resurrection.
7.Therefore, by having the apparition of the risen Lord, Our Lady becomes a participant in a unique way in all the events of Jesus’ life.
If there had not been this apparition, her unique and singular participation in all the main events in the life of Jesus would have been incomplete.
8. It is up to the contemplative souls to meditate on the first apparition of Jesus according to Father Lagrange. It is not wrong then to think that Jesus showed himself to His Mother even in the glory of His Resurrection from the dead and that Mary saw Him also transfigured on the Holy Mountain as Peter, James and John had seen Him.
And that her joy was even greater than that of the three lucky Apostles.
We would not be wrong to think either that Jesus greeted her by borrowing the words predicted by David in Psalm 138.18 according to an ancient version found in the antiphon of the Introit of the Easter Mass: “I am risen and I am again with you” (Resurrexi et adhuc tecum sum).
Thus Our Lady is also the one who lives the resurrection of Christ in an emblematic way, recognizing that He always lives next to her and doing everything together with Him.
Wishing you to live a similar experience, I entrust you to the Lord and I bless you.
p.s .: for further information on your second question, I refer you to the following answer published at the time on our website: