Akathist Hymn to Saint Mary Magdalene

Kontakion 1

Praise be to the God of the Christians, for He hath raised up both men and women to serve His Holy Church.  Among the first of them was Mary, born in Magdala, who walked upon this earth with the blessed Theotokos, the venerable apostles, and the pious myrrhbearing women.  She hath shewn us, through her marvelous transformation, the life-changing power of Christ’s compassion and deliverance. Let us therefore hasten to her and declare:

Rejoice, Mary Magdalene, holy myrrhbearer and first proclaimer of the Resurrection.

 Ikos 1

Thou wast released from demonic possession, Saint Mary Magdalene, when thou didst encounter Jesus Christ in the flesh and in spirit, with His assembly of apostles.  Thy heart was opened unto His divine love, and thy mind was renewed with the words of life which only the Son of God could bring forth.  Since thou art a worthy disciple of the Master and a friend to all Christians, we sing praises unto thee:

Rejoice, thou who didst hear and see the Incarnate Jesus, thy Lord and God.

Rejoice, thou who didst adore and follow Him throughout the hillsides and the towns.

Rejoice, thou who didst hearken unto the holy teachings of Jesus, thy King and Saviour.

Rejoice, thou who didst uphold the Way, the Truth, and the Life among all people and in every place.

Rejoice, thou who wast remembered in Scripture by the four Evangelists: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.

Rejoice, thou who wast a proven servant and wast found pleasing unto the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Rejoice, thou who wast beautifully adorned by thy virtues and thy labours on earth for the Eternal Kingdom.

Rejoice, thou who didst gladly exchange the menacing spirits for the everlasting rewards of Heaven.

Rejoice, thou who canst no longer be tormented.

Rejoice, for thou wast faithful at the Cross of Christ.

Rejoice, thou who canst no longer be grieved.

Rejoice, for thou wast loyal at the tomb of Christ.

Rejoice, Mary Magdalene, holy myrrhbearer and first proclaimer of the Resurrection.

Kontakion 2

We hear of thee, Saint Mary, from the Evangelist Luke, “And it came to pass afterward, that He went throughout every city and village, preaching and shewing the glad tidings of the Kingdom of God: and the twelve were with Him.  And certain women, which had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities, Mary called Magdalene, out of whom went seven devils, and Joanna the wife of Chuza Herod’s servant, and Susanna, and many others, which ministered unto Him of their substance.”  Therein, Mary, with all His followers, thou didst say: Alleluia.

 Ikos 2

Having been made whole, Mary Magdalene, thereupon thou didst thank God and drink of the glad tidings of His Kingdom.  In the presence of Christ who pitied women in wretchedness, and in the company of the other women who worshipped the Lord, thou didst attend unto the needs of His ministry from thine own resources.  God loveth a cheerful giver, and thou gavest of thy finances and of thy heart and soul. It is therefore fitting that we chant praises unto thee:

Rejoice, for all thy sins are forgiven and forgotten.

Rejoice, for thy house hath been swept clean.

Rejoice, for the sinister spirits were rendered powerless.

Rejoice, for thou art now a habitation of the Holy Spirit.

Rejoice, for thou art among believers who serve the Lord.

Rejoice, for thou art a peer of Joanna and Susanna.

Rejoice, for thou art known of the Heavenly Father.

Rejoice, for thy gifts are received at His holy altar.

Rejoice, for thy gratitude is pleasing unto God.

Rejoice, for thy testimony is thine utmost prosperity.

Rejoice, for thy liberation hath made thee beloved of all.

Rejoice, for thy salvation hath beckoned thee to serve all.

Rejoice, Mary Magdalene, holy myrrhbearer and first proclaimer of the Resurrection.

 Kontakion 3

Thou didst experience the wreckage of the ways of evil, for thou wast inwardly possessed of powers which originated outside thyself.  Perchance, Saint Mary, thou didst say and do things which were alien to thy true desires, for the demons tormented thee in their wicked intent to rule over thee and to oppose all that is good.  Notwithstanding, when thou didst meet Jesus, thou didst miraculously say: Alleluia.

 Ikos 3

Saint Mary Magdalene, the demons fled thee under the command of Jesus Christ Whose authority is superiour.  Yea, His purity is greater than all the defilement which the world hath ever devised and more than the sum of all devilish activities.  The obstinate demons obeyed Christ because they were overpowered by His goodness.  Thou, Mary, dost obey because thou lovest thy Master Who did make thee whole.  Wherefore we bring praises unto thee who art filled with gratitude and adoration:

Rejoice, for the devils that were inside thee are now outside.

Rejoice, for thou wast outside the Church but thou art now inside.

Rejoice, for thy feet walk directly on the straight and narrow path.

Rejoice, for Christ guideth thee during the day and granteth thee peaceful rest at night.

Rejoice, for thou art counted among those with renewed minds and pure hearts.

Rejoice, for thy companions are the followers of Christ and the doers of His word.

Rejoice, for even in solitude thou art never bereft and never horrified.

Rejoice, for the love of Christ satisfieth thy soul and maketh thee whole.

Rejoice, for thy devotion is simple.

Rejoice, for thy speech is serene.

Rejoice, for thy gratitude is sincere.

Rejoice, for thy demeanor is sober.

Rejoice, Mary Magdalene, holy myrrhbearer and first proclaimer of the Resurrection.

 Kontakion 4

The journeys of Jesus Christ came to a halt when He was suddenly betrayed and arrested.  Whereafter thou didst begin to hear and see things, Saint Mary, never before heard and seen in this world.  The moment was quickly approaching when thy Master would suffer death on the Cross.  Thou couldst not understand such divine doings, but thy heart remained steadfast as thou didst continue to say: Alleluia.

 Ikos 4

Above all things, Mary Magdalene, thou understandest the way of love.  Thou hast never ceased to love the Master Who profoundly loveth thee.   Thou art guided by love, and it was the revelation of the loving Christ that eventually brought thee unto the understanding of all events.  Since thou art a blessed witness of Christ, we honour thee with praises such as these:

Behold, the Saviour loveth thee, Mary Magdalene, and every hearer of the words of life.

Behold, for He loveth also the yet unsaved and offereth them compassion and deliverance.

Behold, this is the Christ Who cometh into the world to redeem mankind.

Behold, for He giveth His life even for the crazed and the scandalous.

Behold, the King hath saved thee, Mary Magdalene, and all those enslaved by vicious evil.

Behold, for He transformeth the wretched into heirs of the Kingdom.

Behold, this is the Immortal God Who walketh the earth for the sake of mortal man.

Behold, for He beareth the entire weight of the fallen world upon Himself.

Behold, the Good Shepherd hath found thee, Mary Magdalene, and feedeth thee with imperishable faith.

Behold, for He bringeth thee into His ministry and unto His Cross and tomb.

Behold, for this is the Messiah Who gathereth and teacheth His followers in the right Way.

Behold, for He keepeth all those who serve Him in holiness of life.

Rejoice, Mary Magdalene, holy myrrhbearer and first proclaimer of the Resurrection.

 Kontakion 5

Let us gain strength and consolation from the Crucifixion, for therein we partake of the glorious love of Jesus Christ Who bore our sins.  May we embrace the Holy Cross as new creatures, made whole by the pouring out of His Precious Blood, for thereby we are bonded to Him forever in His compassion and deliverance, saying: Alleluia.

 Ikos 5

Jesus Christ said, “He that eateth My Flesh, and drinketh My Blood, dwelleth in Me, and I in him.  As the loving Father hath sent Me, and I live by the Father; so he that eateth Me, even he shall live by Me.”  Come then, let us share in the heavenly life so richly flowing forth through the wounds of Christ. Let all believers stand at the foot of the Holy Cross with Mary Magdalene and sing these praises:

Behold the Splendid Saviour.

Behold the Righteous Redeemer.

Behold the Innocent Immortal.

Behold the Faithful Friend.

Behold the Divine Deliverer.

Behold the Courageous Conqueror.

Behold the Wondrous Word.

Behold the Lasting Love.

Behold the Humble Heart.

Behold the Victorious Voice.

Behold the Eternal Eyes.

Behold the Almighty Arms.

Rejoice, Mary Magdalene, holy myrrhbearer and first proclaimer of the Resurrection.

 Kontakion 6

Mary Magdalene, thou wast a devoted follower of Christ in the height of His ministry and at the hour of His death.  Thy perfect love did cast out fear and thy vigorous faith did drive away distrust. Thou didst perceive the sacredness of Christ whether He was teaching the multitudes or enduring cruelty from the persecutors.  Even in His humiliation, thou didst never disown Him because thou art constant in belief, saying: Alleluia.

 Ikos 6

Thou didst look on, with the blessed and pure Virgin Mother, when the sun was darkened.  Thou didst see with thine own eyes, as did John the Theologian, when the Son of God gave up the ghost.  Thou didst lament with the other righteous women whose love death could not extinguish.  We are unworthy of thy holiness, Saint Mary Magdalene, yet in admiration we rightfully bring these praises:

Behold the Theotokos, how she remaineth with her Son in maternal tenderness and deep faith.

Behold, for she miraculously gave Him birth and fainteth not at the Cross.

Behold John the Theologian, how he loveth Christ more than he loveth any thing of this world.

Behold, for the beloved disciple learnt to love truly from the Son of God.

Behold the righteous women, how they bravely proceed unto the end of the earthly journey.

Behold, for they began in Galilee and did not sidestep Golgotha.

Behold the Crucified Christ, how He humbly fulfilleth the will of the Father Who sent Him.

Behold, for He offereth forgiveness and salvation whilst brutally nailed on the Cross.

Behold the unlimited love.

Behold the unconstrained compassion.

Behold the immeasurable mercy.

Behold the unrestricted redemption.

Rejoice, Mary Magdalene, holy myrrhbearer and first proclaimer of the Resurrection.

 Kontakion 7

The noble Joseph and the honourable Nicodemus removed the Precious Body of the Saviour from the Cross.  Saint Mary, thou didst watch as they carried the slumped figure of Life Immortal, the good and true Shepherd and Redeemer of the human race, the Life-Giving Christ Who shall trample down death by death. The cherished Jesus will bestow life upon all, even though He is now being transported to the burial chamber as a dead man, that all of creation might say: Alleluia.

Ikos 7

From the Cross to the tomb, the Son of God, Who had readily walked the earth in search of the lost and wayward, was carried in the arms of men whom He had made strong in faith and piety. He Who stretched out His loving arms at the Crucifixion was taken to the sepulchre.  Jesus was properly laid in a tomb, wherein the cold stone was not the final destination of the Lord and God of creation, but a vault of confidence and expectation for all who sing praises such as these:

Behold the Beloved Son.

Behold the Path of Perfection.

Behold the Pure Body.

Behold the Fountain of Forgiveness.

Behold the Sovereign King.

Behold the Temple of Truth.

Behold the Priceless Pearl.

Behold the Haven of Hope.

Behold the Sacred Enlightenment.

Behold the Door of Deliverance.

Behold the Patient Love.

Behold the Vine of Virtue.

Rejoice, Mary Magdalene, holy myrrhbearer and first proclaimer of the Resurrection.

 Kontakion 8

Saint Mary Magdalene, on the first day of the week and in the darkness of early morning, thou didst bring myrrh unto the tomb of Christ. However, the tomb had been opened and Christ was not there.  In bewilderment, thou didst run to the Apostles Peter and John, saying, “They have taken away the Lord out of the sepulchre, and we know not where they have laid Him.”  Whereupon everyone went forth to the tomb, saying with faith in the Almighty God: Alleluia.

 Ikos 8

Yea, Mary Magdalene, thou didst run to the Apostle Peter, and then he evangelized all the world, saying, “Casting your cares upon Him, for He careth for you.”  Thou, Mary, didst hasten to the Apostle John who then testified unto the brethren, saying, “Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth Jesus is the Son of God?”  Thereafter, Saint Mary, all generations of Christians have sung praises unto thee:

Behold the incomprehensible care of Christ for men and women.

Behold, for He hath died to give us abundant life.

Behold, let us cast our cares upon Him today, lest His death be for nought.

Behold, that we may care for one another as He hath cared for us.

Behold the glorious victory of Christ over this world.

Behold, for He hath triumphed over sin and death.

Behold, let us gain deep faith in the Son of God.

Behold, that we may overcome all evil through belief.

Behold, Mary Magdalene, thou who art Godly-minded.

Behold, Mary Magdalene, thou who art Christ-centered.

Behold, Mary Magdalene, thou who art Spirit-filled.

Behold, Mary Magdalene, thou who art of one mind and heart with the apostles.

Rejoice, Mary Magdalene, holy myrrhbearer and first proclaimer of the Resurrection.

 Kontakion 9

The apostles returned home whilst thou, holy and blessed Mary, didst look down into the tomb and weep.  Lo, angels in white apparel shewed themselves unto thee, to comfort thee and direct thee toward the Resurrected Christ.  Thou who wast possessed of seven devils, now speakest with two angels from Heaven.  Thy provision of myrrh hath been accepted, although not meet for the living, because thou doest everything with love for thy Lord and with courage amid His enemies, always saying: Alleluia.

 Ikos 9

Jesus stood near thee and called out thy name, “Mary.”  Then, thou didst recognize Him as thy Teacher and Master, resurrected but not yet ascended, and thou wast filled with gladness and thanksgiving.  Thou hadst always sought Him and followed Him throughout thy life and now, instead of anointing Him with myrrh, thou callest out the Name of the Life-Giving Saviour.  We admire thee for thy fortitude, Saint Mary Madgalene, and we chant these praises unto thee:

Behold the Risen Christ.

Behold, “Mary.”

Behold the Absolute Liberator.

Behold, thou holy myrrhbearer.

Behold the Sinless Lord.

Behold, thou faithful disciple.

Behold the Eternal Conqueror.

Behold, thou worthy herald.

Behold the Living Sacrifice.

Behold, thou vigilant follower.

Behold the True God.

Behold, thou courageous saint.

Rejoice, Mary Magdalene, holy myrrhbearer and first proclaimer of the Resurrection.

Kontakion 10

There were also other women who had arrived at the tomb, including the ever-blessed Theotokos.  Let us give tribute to all the myrrhbearing women: Joanna and Susanna; Salome; Mary, the wife of Cleopas, who also stood at the Cross; Martha and Mary, the sisters of Lazarus; and others who hid not but desired to attend unto Jesus Christ even at the sepulchre.  They thereby deepened their faith and gained understanding, saying to one another: Alleluia.

 Ikos 10

Brothers and sisters, let us take away the stone from our paltry existence and emulate Mary Magdalene and the myrrhbearing women.  May we arise above the stench of sin, through the Resurrected Christ, and offer Him the gifts of a pure heart and a renewed mind.  Come, then, and sing praises unto Mary Magdalene, for she loveth the Lord Jesus with everlasting love:

Rejoice, for the Lord is not missing but is resurrected.

Rejoice, for He bestoweth life upon all.

Rejoice, for Christ was not taken away but standeth near thee.

Rejoice, for thou art the first to hear and see the Resurrected Lord.

Rejoice, for thy myrrh is acceptable unto Christ.

Rejoice, for thou bringest forth works from thy great love.

Rejoice, for thy tears no longer fall upon the cold stone of deadness.

Rejoice, for Christ revealed His Resurrection unto thee who soughtest Him.

Rejoice, for thou art remembered forever as a myrrhbearing woman.

Rejoice, for the fragrance of thy love doth permeate the Church of Christ.

Rejoice, for thou art released from the torment of devils and the sorrow of the sepulchre.

Rejoice, for Christ is Risen.

Rejoice, Mary Magdalene, holy myrrhbearer and first proclaimer of the Resurrection.

 Kontakion 11

Jesus Christ instructed thee to go to His brothers, the apostles.  Yea, Saint Mary, He did call them His brothers although only the beloved John had stood with Him at the Cross and none were now present at the sepulchre.  Such is the unfathomable love of the Saviour, and that is the divine plan of salvation of the Heavenly Father.  Thou, Mary, didst obey the wishes of thy Master, saying: Alleluia

 Ikos 11

Saint Mary Magdalene, thou didst again run to the apostles, saying unto them, “I have seen the Lord,” and therein thou art the first proclaimer of the Resurrection.  Thou art recognized by the Holy Church as Equal-to-the-Apostles, for thou didst pray with them and travel with them to proclaim the Resurrection of Jesus Christ and to witness of His teachings.  We therefore run to thee and offer our heartfelt praises:

Rejoice, thou who art the first eyewitness of the Risen Christ.

Rejoice, thou who beholdest His radiant compassion.

Rejoice, thou who art Equal-to-the-Apostles.

Rejoice, thou who dost work and pray in unity with the brethren.

Rejoice, thou who art the Apostle-to-the-Apostles.

Rejoice, thou who bringest glad tidings unto the commissioned of Christ.

Rejoice with the apostles and the myrrhbearers.

Rejoice with the angels in white apparel.

Rejoice with the Theotokos in grand majesty.

Rejoice with all those delivered from demons.

Rejoice with all those who care for one another.

Rejoice with all those who overcome through Christ.

Rejoice, Mary Magdalene, holy myrrhbearer and first proclaimer of the Resurrection.

 Kontakion 12

Thou didst travel with the other apostles, telling the people of Rome about the compassion and deliverance of Jesus Christ, and proclaiming what thou hadst heard and seen in the burial chamber.  Saint Mary, thou didst say to everyone, “I have seen the Lord,” and the people replied: Alleluia.

 Ikos 12

When thou didst meet with the Emperor Tiberius, thou gavest him a red-coloured egg to represent the Resurrection, and thou didst say, “Christ is Risen.”  It is for this cause that, to this day and in churches all over the world, the faithful give eggs on the Feast of the Resurrection.  Thou art illustrious and commendable, Saint Mary Magdalene, and we praise thy wondrous life and thank God for thy marvelous labours:

Rejoice, thou who didst journey afar for the sake of Christ.

Rejoice, for thou didst arrive at the tomb with weeping and in Rome with glad tidings.

Rejoice, thou who didst witness of Christ crucified and resurrected.

Rejoice, for thou didst go to the apostles and then to the people of Italy.

Rejoice, thou who art vigilant in prayer and diligent in good works.

Rejoice, for thou hast never ceased to say, “I have seen the Lord.”

Rejoice, thou who art resplendent with beauty of soul.

Rejoice, thou who hast shewn thyself to be a woman of deep faith.

Rejoice, thou who findest strength in God.

Rejoice, thou who puttest thy trust in Christ.

Rejoice, thou who hast profited from His compassion.

Rejoice, thou who didst go forth in His deliverance.

Rejoice, Mary Magdalene, holy myrrhbearer and first proclaimer of the Resurrection.

 Kontakion 13

Saint Mary Magdalene, we know not the complete story of thy background and personal life.  Yet, we know about the Lord because of thee.  The light of Jesus Christ shone upon thee throughout His ministry, Crucifixion and Resurrection.  Thy name, Mary Magdalene, is always related to the Name of Christ, because thou didst love and serve Him and didst never exalt thine own self.  Thou wast delighted to say with the apostles and the myrrhbearing women: Alleluia.  Alleluia.  Alleluia.

(Repeat Kontakion 13 three times.)

 Kontakion 1 (repeated)

Praise be to the God of the Christians, for He hath raised up both men and women to serve His Holy Church.  Among the first of them was Mary, born in Magdala, who walked upon this earth with the blessed Theotokos, the venerable apostles, and the pious myrrhbearing women.  She hath shewn us, through her marvelous transformation, the life-changing power of Christ’s compassion and deliverance. Let us therefore hasten to her and declare:

Rejoice, Mary Magdalene, holy myrrhbearer and first proclaimer of the Resurrection.

 Ikos 1 (repeated)

Thou wast released from demonic possession, Saint Mary Magdalene, when thou didst encounter Jesus Christ in the flesh and in spirit, with His assembly of apostles.  Thy heart was opened unto His divine love, and thy mind was renewed with the words of life which only the Son of God could bring forth.  Since thou art a worthy disciple of the Master and a friend to all Christians, we sing praises unto thee:

Rejoice, thou who didst hear and see the Incarnate Jesus, thy Lord and God.

Rejoice, thou who didst adore and follow Him throughout the hillsides and the towns.

Rejoice, thou who didst hearken unto the holy teachings of Jesus, thy King and Saviour.

Rejoice, thou who didst uphold the Way, the Truth, and the Life among all people and in every place.

Rejoice, thou who wast remembered in Scripture by the four Evangelists: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.

Rejoice, thou who wast a proven servant and wast found pleasing unto the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Rejoice, thou who wast beautifully adorned by thy virtues and thy labours on earth for the Eternal Kingdom.

Rejoice, thou who didst gladly exchange the menacing spirits for the everlasting rewards of Heaven.

Rejoice, thou who canst no longer be tormented.

Rejoice, for thou wast faithful at the Cross of Christ.

Rejoice, thou who canst no longer be grieved.

Rejoice, for thou wast loyal at the tomb of Christ.

Rejoice, Mary Magdalene, holy myrrhbearer and first proclaimer of the Resurrection.

 A Prayer

Saint Mary Magdalene, thou wast called forth by God and wast blessed to do good deeds for the ministry of Jesus Christ.  We pray for thy continual aid to His followers today. Thou who wast a witness of the Crucifixion, let us not crucify anew the Saviour but fall before Him in repentance and with gratitude.  Thou who wast present at the sepulchre, let us hear the Christ Who calls out our names for deliverance from malice and death.  Teach us to serve the Holy Church according to our means and talents, and embolden us to confess Jesus Christ unto all the rulers and the lost of this world.  From our heart we say unto thee, “Christ is Risen,” and we implore thine intercession for His great mercy and compassion upon us.  Amen.

Copyright © 2014 by Natalia J. Garland

Batch 25, Version 4

This material may be reprinted and redistributed for personal and non-profit uses only.

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