From a Sermon by St. Gregory the Pope
When even Christ’s disciples went away to their own homes, Mary Magdalene still stood without at his sepulchre, weeping. She sought him whom her soul loved, but she found him not. She searched for him with tears, and yearned with strong desire for him who (as she believed) had been taken away. And this it befell her that being the only one who had remained to seek him, she was the only one that saw him. How true it is that the backbone of a good work is perseverance. At first when she sought him, she found him not. But she went on searching, and so it came to pass that she found him. And this was so, to the end that her longing might grow in earnestness, and so in its earnestness might find what it sought. Hence is it that the Bride in the Song of Songs saith as representing the Church : By night on my bed I sought him whom my soul loveth. We seek on our bed for him whom our soul loveth, when, having got some little rest in this world, we still sigh for the presence of our Redeemer. But it is by night that we so seek him, for though our mind may be on the alert for him, yet still he is hidden from our eyes by the darkness that now is.
But if we find not him whom our soul liveth, it remaineth that we should rise and go about the city ; that is, by thought and questioning, go through the holy Church of the elect. We should seek him in the streets, and in the broad ways; that is , walk, anxiously looking about us, both in the narrow and the broad places, if so be, that we may find his footsteps there ; for there be some even of those who live for the world, from whom the godly may learn a thing or two worth imitating. As we this go wakefully about, the watchmen, that keep the city, find us ; that is, the holy Fathers (who are in effect the Church) come to meet our good endeavours, and to teach us either by their words or by their writing. And it needeth but little to pass form them, but w3e find him whom our soul loveth ; that is, even by passing through a little of their teaching, we may find our Redeemer. For he in lowliness became as a man among men, yet by right of his divine nature he is still above them.
Collect:O Almighty God, whose blessed Son didst call and sanctify Mary Magdalene to be a witness to his resurrection : mercifully grant that by thy grace we may be healed of all our infirmities, and always serve thee in the power of his endless life, through the same Jesus Christ thy Son our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, unto ages of ages. Amen.