"Do Whatever He Tells You"

01-16-2022Weekly ReflectionFr. Manasseh Iorchir, VC

On the very first day of the year, the Church celebrated the Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God. Apart from reflecting on her virtues, we were encouraged to humbly seek her unfailing maternal intercession for our world and for our individual selves. Two Sundays later, the Gospel presents to us how effective her maternal intercession can be, even when it is unsolicited.

The Gospel according to St. John presents this event as the first miracle worked by Jesus during His public ministry. An unnamed fellow was having a wedding feast and had extended an invitation to Jesus and His mother Mary among other guests. At some point during the event, they ran out of wine, an essential beverage at Jewish marriage celebrations. Knowing who Jesus was and His Divine abilities, Mary approached her Son with a simple yet profoundly faith-laced request: “They have no wine.” Jesus’ initial objection that His time “has not yet come” did not deter her. She was so convinced of His Divine ability, as well as His favorable disposition towards her, that without argument she went to the servers and instructed them to “do whatever He tells you.” Mary’s unsolicited intercession and absolute trust in her Son saved the day.

Without much fanfare, in honor of His mother’s request and to the complete ignorance of the host, Jesus instructed the servers to fi ll six stone water jars with water, to fetch it and present some to the steward of the event. The servers fetched water from the stone jars without complaint or doubt, they presented it to the steward in obedience to this seemingly ludicrous instruction, and he drank the best wine.

It is very revealing that Jesus’ first messianic sign was worked at a marriage feast, the celebration of the very institution that begets the family. This should spur those who are hesitant or skeptical, and even those already considering a marriage commitment, to make a leap of faith by not only entering into the marriage covenant but also doing so accompanied by Jesus and Mary.

Not only does Mary show in this didactic story the efficacy of her intercession even when unsolicited, she also teaches us to trust and obey Jesus even when it seems His response to our concerns does not meet our expectations. “Do whatever He tells you” is her consistent and perpetual refrain for all who desire a relationship with her Divine Son. Like the servers, we should be willing to obey Christ even when the path He leads us on does not seem straight and “perfect” to our mortal senses.

May the Virgin Mother continue to intercede for all families, especially those currently experiencing marital turbulence. May Jesus continue to anticipate and provide our material and spiritual necessities, and may we be aided by grace to trust and obey Him in all things and at all times.

Please be kind and may God bless you.