Mary Magdalene

As a relic of Mary Magdalene tours the U.S. for the first time, former call girl Tracy Quan on how the patron saint of prostitutes has been present throughout her life.

Credit: Courtesy Father Thomas Michelet, OP

Credit: Courtesy Father Thomas Michelet, OP

Father Aquinas Guilbeau, OP, Parochial Vicar at St. Vincent Ferrer, venerating the Magdalene relics.

Will Crutchfield

Mary Magdalene, before and after. Interior of the Sainte-Baume Grotto or cave, which local tradition regards as the place where Mary Magdalene lived for 30 years. Left, a depiction of the sinful Magdalene before she converted. Fun fact: This 19th-century statue is rumored to be the likeness of a Provencal landowner's mistress. Nobody knows exactly how it became part of the Grotto collection or when it was given to the church. Right, the saintly Mary Magdalene after conversion, ascends to heaven.

Will Crutchfield

Top of the Sainte-Baume mountain. Entrance to the cave, lovingly fashioned into a church and watched over by the Dominican Order. Provencal tradition regards this as the place where Mary Magdalene lived for 30 years, after a busy career preaching the gospel and converting the locals.

Courtesy Father Thomas Michelet, OP

The reliquary designed for Saint Mary Magdalene's first overseas voyage.

Credit: Courtesy Father Thomas Michelet, OP

Venerating the relics at Saint Vincent Ferrer church in Manhattan.

Will Crutchfield

On the Sainte-Baume mountain, a "turn off your cellphone" visual.

Will Crutchfield

A pilgrim’s progress. Tracy climbing the Sainte-Baume mountain, stopping for a rest.

Will Crutchfield

At the foot of the Sainte-Baume mountain in Provence. The monkmobile: A car door features the updated logo of the Sainte-Baume church. Mary Magdalene ascending, flanked by angels.

Courtesy Father Thomas Michelet, OP

The Magdalene relics; altar of Saint Vincent Ferrer church.

Will Crutchfield

I enjoy being a pilgrim! Tracy, overjoyed at her progress, after a rather challenging climb.