Mother Mary, Our Helper!

Justine John Dyikuk

Justine John Dyikuk

Second Sunday of the Year C – January 16, 2022.

Readings: Isaiah 62:1-5; Responsorial Psalm PS 96:1-3,7-10; 1 Corinthians 12:4-11 & Gospel John 2:1-11.

Theme: Mother Mary, Our Helper!

Sunday Synopsis

In the first reading, the Prophet Isaiah brings a message of hope that the nations will see the integrity of the Jerusalem. In the second reading, St. Paul insists that there are a variety of gifts in the Church given by the same Lord but meant for service. He lists these gifts as, preaching, instruction, faith, healing, miracles, prophecy, recognising spirits, tongues and interpretation. The Gospel narrates how Jesus and his mother were invited for a wedding at Cana in Galilee. It tells how the couple ran out of wine and Mary intervened. Today’s liturgy invites us to seek Mary’s maternal intercession so that the new wine of good works would never run out of our lives.

Introduction

Friends in Christ, our liturgy this Sunday presents us with an opportunity to reflect on prayer and its potential in the economy of salvation. I pray we use this occasion to re-catechise ourselves about the various forms of prayer in the Church namely latria, hyperdulia and dulia. We shall scan through a summary of the readings to draw pastoral lessons.

Background & Summary of the Readings

In the first reading (Isaiah 62:1-5), the Prophet Isaiah brings a message of hope that the nations will see the integrity of the Jerusalem. He notes that she would be called by a new name and a crown of splendour as well as a princely diadem in the hand of the Lord. He further uses poetic device to describe her being wedded like a young man marries a virgin and ends by saying God would rejoice in her.

In the second reading (1 Corinthians 12:4-11), St. Paul insists that there are a variety of gifts in the Church given by the same Lord but meant for service. He lists these gifts as, preaching, instruction, faith, healing, miracles, prophecy, recognising spirits, tongues and interpretation. He concludes by emphasizing that: “All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, who distributes different gifts to different people just as he chooses.”

The Gospel (John 2:1-11) narrates how Jesus and his mother were invited for a wedding at Cana in Galilee. It tells how the couple ran out of wine and Mary intervened. Jesus obliged his mother by telling the servants to fill the six stone jars with water. When they did, the water had turned into wine. Although his hour had not yet come, he saved this couple from total embarrassment.

Pastoral Lessons

  1. Be Wedded to God: The first reading challenges us to be wedded to God by being committed to him knowing fully well that it pleases him well if we do his will.
  2. Use Your Gifts: The variety of gifts in the Church namely, preaching, instruction, faith, healing, miracles, prophecy, recognising spirits, tongues and interpretation, like fine wine calls us to use our gifts and talents for the advancement of the kingdom of God.
  3. Assist Others: The role of the servants who assisted in filling the stone jars with water which can be likened to Dulia which motivates us to assist others get the answers about life or come close to Jesus.
  4. Pray through Mary: As a demonstration of Hyperdulia, we have the Blessed Virgin Mary who is ever there to intervene for us so that the wine of patience in our lives does not get finished especially when we pray the Holy Rosary, observe May and October Devotions or seek the maternal intercession of the BVM and engage in other Marian Prayers.
  5. Seek God’s Intervention: Jesus’ first nature miracle demonstrates his compassion for fallen humanity and how he intervenes to not only to save us from embarrassment but ever pleads our cause before the father.

Summary Lines

  1. In the first reading, the Prophet Isaiah brings a message of hope that the nations will see the integrity of the Jerusalem.
  2. In the second reading, St. Paul insists that there are a variety of gifts in the Church given by the same Lord but meant for service.
  3. He lists these gifts as, preaching, instruction, faith, healing, miracles, prophecy, recognising spirits, tongues and interpretation.
  4. The Gospel (John 2:1-11) narrates how Jesus and his mother were invited for a wedding at Cana in Galilee.
  5. It tells how the couple ran out of wine and Mary intervened.

Conclusion

The miracle of Cana, through his mother’s intercession demonstrates how the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary work in unison towards salvation. The Virgin Mary’s intervention and the role of the stewards who filled the six stone jars with water reminds us about the intercessory role of prayer. With prayer, our wine of impatience would be replaced by patience, faithlessness by robust faith and materialism with solid spirituality. Indeed, with prayer, our wine of faith will never diminish. Have a great day!

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