Where shall I begin? I will begin with this story.
In February of 2013, I venerated the shin bone of St. Mary Magdalene. The relic was on tour in the United States. Six months later, Mary Magdalene appeared to me in a dream. The apparition did not announce herself by name. She did not speak a word. I was in a crowded room when suddenly everyone dispersed instantly except for one, the lady. She robed herself in ancient attire, the style we would imagine women wore in Our Lord's time and place. By intuition, I understood that the lady was holy. She looked into my eyes and smiled. Then I woke up.
After waking, I knew her as Magdalene by an unfolding awareness that preceded and then embraced me. She had appeared as one with primacy to a hidden story. Over time, her story unfolded in the context of a mysterious map of meaning through a kingdom with which I felt familiar but had not formally traversed. Through empathic devotion to Mary Magdalene, guided by traditional Catholic metaphysics, the mystical kingdom presented itself as an ever-appearing phenomenon. It held within itself Magdalene’s story as a map of meaning shining through Our Lady’s hidden mediation with the Holy Trinity. The phenomenon of the kingdom appeared on my noetic event horizon. I felt immersed in apprehension of something that needed to be put into words.
Magdalene beckoned me to a transformational mode of being in Christ, a comportment with Logos that is primordial to all Being and is Being itself. Through her, I did not obtain an answer to a metaphysical question, Veritas, but was given a phenomenological question that needed an answer, Aletheia. Her map needed an Aletheian unfolding and constituting in my being - heart, mind, and soul. To constitute the map, I had to follow its passable pathways through time along the Trail of the Dogmatic Creed to the kingdom in the distance. Joan and Thérèse guided me towards that horizon over the years.
God beckons us through the appearance of the appearing that embraces us in the question needing an answer. The call to journey is not only the Veritas of Catholic metaphysics but the Aletheian unfolding of a phenomenon in union with it. The combined hearts of Joan and Thérèse represent Veritas and Aletheia before, behind, and beside us as we follow the soft light marking Magdalene’s map. The primacy of the unfolding journey, Aletheia, is governed and protected by the Veritas of the Trail of the Dogmatic Creed. Joan and Thérèse guide us through our upright heart of goodwill in union with the magisterial teachings of the Holy Catholic Church.
“’Let the hearts of those who seek the LORD rejoice.’ Although man can forget God or reject him, He never ceases to call every man to seek him, so as to find life and happiness. But this search for God demands of man every effort of intellect, a sound will, ‘an upright heart’, as well as the witness of others who teach him to seek God.” (CCC, para 30.)
A phenomenological expression of French Catholic Spirituality