Several Scriptural scholars have seen a resemblance in the selection from Luke today with the Cana Narrative about the wedding feast where Mary was present. Perhaps, this is based on the apparent misunderstanding of Joseph and Mary with regard to Jesus reason for being in the Temple and then the difficult words of Jesus to his mother Mary. There is also the similarity that both events occur before Jesus’active ministry and give us an insight into the hidden years and the mystery of the relatiohship of Jesus to Mary and Joseph during those “hidden years.” This is nothing new. Recently, in a doctoral thesis, a student from the Intenational Marian Research Institute, has gone through the interpretations of the Fathers of the Church up to the high Middle Ages in their commentaries on the Cana account. It is several times seen in the linking of it to the Finding of the Child Jesus in the Temple. We learn much from these early theologians on how they read the texts and often were in tune with modern interpretations. That is the beauty of researchers who uncover such treasures of knowledge and insight.
Today’s feast came into universal prominence after World War II and gave believers a reason for hope for the future of the world being at peace. It has not happened that way, but in the designs of salvation history we have the woman Mary playing a role in this mysterious working of God in our troubled world. Paul is the one who brought this to our attention in Galatians 4:4-5 : But when the fullness of time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman born under the Law (Torah), that he might redeem those who were under the Law; that we might receive the adoption of sons (and daughters)…” The Popes entrusted the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary seeing that the love of a mother’s heart was important in bringing about peace and joy to our world. Mary’s heart was always turned to her Son and thus to us those loved and redeemed by her Son. Her heart is always turned to all of us her children. “Behold! Your Mother” was Jesus words to us in the person of the Beloved Disciple.
G.K. Chesterton had a devotion to Mary and expressed it by saying he wanted to remove the sword from Mary’s heart. What a beautiful thought on the part of one of her brilliant children. This is more than a metaphorical expression or a pious thought. It is a prayer that goes to the heart of Mary and in some ways must be moving the sword from her heart. We are helped to realize how closely we all are related to Mary through her giving birth to Jesus and then to us at the foot of the Cross. We say we are dedicated or consecrated to Mary through this mystery, but she was already dedicated and consecrated to us as a loving mother in the mystery of salvation. It was her eternal Yes that brought about the Word becoming flesh and then showing us how to turn our hearts to this greatest of mysteries in the Bible: “And the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us. (John 1:14).
From the depths of her heart and her entire being she responded to her invitation from God to be the mother of God’s only begotten Son.
Thus she had from that moment in time conceived the Eternal Word of God become one with us in time. She followed that Son every step of his way with her whole heart even when she was not actually present with him as we learn from the Scriptures—even when he was thought to be lost in the Temple or somewhere in Jerusalem. She learned to enter his way of showing us God’s time (kairos) that meshed in his flesh with our time (chromos) and thus through his pierced heart enabled us to understand her pierced heart and her role in suffering together with him. The blood and water that flowed from his side was actually a part of hers as in the case with any mother and child. What did Mary do after she found Jesus and had a turning from sorrow to joy? She pondered all these things in her heart and continues to ponder all the things that are in our hearts. We can learn much from the heart of Mary which tells the story of all mothers’ hearts. Amen.
Copyright 2012 Fr. Bertand Buby, S.M.