The Mother of Jesus was There

2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time
By Fr. Chinnappan Peleabendran

My dear brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus, today we celebrate the second Sunday of ordinary time. After the Solemnities of Christmas, Epiphany, and Baptism of the Lord, we enter into an ordinary time. In the beginning of Ordinary Time, I invite you to think about Mother Mary’s role in the life of Jesus.

Every child’s vocation is the parents’ constant prayer, not only after the birth of a son or a daughter but as prophet Jeremiah says, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; before you were born I dedicated you.” I used to see my father attend Mass every day in my parish. As a family, we prayed the Rosary every evening. My mother used to say three Rosaries each day even though she was illiterate. One day, I asked her, “Do you know the Mysteries of the Rosary?” She replied to me, “No.” I asked her then, what are you saying? She said, “Just an Our Father and Hail Mary.” Her simple prayers helped me to become a priest.

Mothers are timeless teachers in the classroom of life and, alongside fathers, the most influential educators. Mothers teach us to believe in God. Mothers teach us the value of God’s word through their lives. Mothers are one of the first indications of God in our lives.

Moses was one of the major figures in the Old Testament. Although we are not told much about his mother, she played a very important role in his life. The Jews had been in Egypt for 400 years under the rule of the pharaohs. One pharaoh then ordered all male Hebrew babies to be killed. When Moses’ mother gave birth to a healthy son, instead of killing him she took a basket and coated the bottom with tar to make it waterproof. She put her baby in it and set him among the reeds on the bank of the Nile River.

Just imagine the sorrow and agony of that mother, how much she cried when she returned home. Her prayer was answered by God. Pharaoh’ daughter came to bathe in the river and one of her maidservants saw the basket and brought it to her. She adopted the baby as her own (Moses’ mother was even paid to nurse him) and he grew up in the palace. Years later, after many hardships, Moses was used by God as His chosen instrument to free the Hebrew people from slavery and lead them to the edge of the Promised Land. Moses’ mother showed great trust in God’s faithfulness. Her prayers helped Moses to grow in faith and trust and to liberate and lead their people from bondage to the Promised Land.

When we look at today’s Gospel, on the third day, a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee. Jesus’ mother was there Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to him, “They have no more wine.” “Dear woman, why do you involve me?” Jesus replied. “My time has not yet come.” His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.” Jesus is withdrawing Himself from her authority. Jesus knew what His mission was and whom it was that was leading and guiding Him. The miracle itself served to draw others to follow Jesus.

Mary had the gift of prayer or intercession. She knew that her Son would not refuse her anything good. So, she immediately interceded on behalf of her people. This was Jesus’ first miracle. When Mary and Joseph presented their newborn Son, Jesus, to the priest in the Temple, they consecrated Him to God. Mary acknowledged that God had a plan for her Son and agreed to do everything in her power to cooperate with God’s purpose for him. Likewise, you Christian parents consecrate your children to God in the Sacrament of Baptism and promise to do everything possible to help your children to do what God wants in their lives.

Herod tried to kill Jesus, so Mary and Joseph fled to Egypt to protect their Son. Christian mothers keep your children away from evil forces that could harm them. Mary and Joseph took their Son, Jesus, to the synagogue in Nazareth each week in observance of the Sabbath and took him to the Temple in Jerusalem each year for Passover. Mothers, follow Mary’s example by going to Mass each week and taking your children with you because it is so important to pray with others. When Jesus was crucified, Mary stood at the foot of the Cross and suffered with him. She never abandons her child, particularly when things are at their worst. This sort of enduring love is exemplary for Christian mothers. Children get into trouble; sometimes for the right reasons, sometimes not. Mothers, like Mary, stand with your children throughout life, especially when things go bad.

Yes, my dear parents, be with your children all the time like Mother Mary, so that your children will grow like Jesus: doing good work in society, being faithful to God, and being faithful to you.

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