Today's Saint (July 22): Mary Magdalene, Penitent
Although the Gospels give no specific support for the association, Saint Mary Magdalene is known in the gospel account of Luke as the sinner who washed the feet of Our Lord with her tears and anointed them; hence the gospel lesson for the day from Luke.
She is also believed to have been the sister of Lazarus, as well as the same Mary who sought the body of Jesus following His Crucifixion.
Mary Magdalene is hope to us sinners of God's unfailing love in forgiving sins. All that He asks of us is that we truly repent through sorrow and contrition for our frequent wanderings of the heart.
The accompanying picture is from a Florence panel attributed to the artist Pietro Perugino (1498).
May we take comfort in Our Lord's words regarding Mary, "Her sins, which are many, are forgiven: for she loved much." (The day's gospel, page E 91, People's Anglican Missal)
Books worth considering
Mary Magdalene: The Image of a Woman Through the Centuries
The Treasury of Saints and Martyrs
Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church
The Concise Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church
The Oxford Dictionary of Saints (Oxford Paperback Reference)
The Penguin Dictionary of Saints: Third Edition (Dictionary, Penguin)