Waiting at the Tomb: A Women’s Prayer Vigil

[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”]

Women's Prayer Vigil
Women’s Prayer Vigil

Now Mary Magdalene and another Mary kept vigil there, seated opposite the tomb. Matthew 27:61

Over 2,000 years ago, it was the women who kept vigil outside of Jesus’s tomb. In his book, Immortal Diamond, Franciscan priest Fr. Richard Rohr gives some meaningful guidance on how to follow Mary and Mary Magdalene as we wait, hope, and pray together:

Picture yourself, like Mary Magdalene, sitting outside the tomb of the buried Christ. It is the ultimate luminal space, the Sabbath of Sabbaths, the time of ultimate rest and waiting: the Saturday between Good Friday and Easter Sunday.

Many fruitful possibilities and entranceways are offered here. Read the list below, and try the practices that most invite or challenge you. These might help you find your attention and your inner silence. Let it be your guiding metaphor…as you also keep vigil.

  • Sitting in love.
  • Filling the tragic gap with pure presence, often in the presence of “nothing” or even “death.”
  • Note that Mary does not keep vigil alone. Prayer often needs other “Marys” for support, as we see in this text.
  • Waiting without answers.
  • Hoping without evidence.
  • Love sustaining itself by longing.
  • Inner space is only created by patient watching.
  • The “grief work” of holding patiently, without resolution or consolation.
  • Prayer as watching and waiting more than doing.
  • Prayer as unknowing and not knowing.
  • Prayer of quiet (no talking mentioned).
  • Christ in the tomb is still the Christ (absence is its own kind of presence).
  • The dead Christ is still Christ. What does that connote for you? How often do you intentionally  pray in the presence of a “dead” situation?
  • An exercise in not forcing resurrection but letting it come when it will.
  • Note that a “large stone is across the entranceway” but they do not try to move it.

Beginning Good Friday through Easter Sunday, we invite you to keep vigil for one hour (in your own home) to reflect on the meaning of Easter with a guided meditation utilizing some of the tools listed above. To schedule your vigil time, click here.[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

Leave your comment

Please enter your name.
Please enter comment.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.