Our Lady of Lourdes

Monday 14 December 2015

Our Lady of Lourdes Jesus said to Mary :“What do you want from me? My hour has not yet come. His mother said to the servants : ’Do whatever He tells you.’” Wednesday 11th February 2015 Feast Days of Our Lady. 2. Our Lady of Lourdes “On the third day, there was a wedding feast at Cana in Galilee.The mother of Jesus was there, and Jesus and his disciples had also been invited. And they ran out of wine, since the wine provided for the feast had all been used, and the mother of Jesus said to him, ’They have no more wine.’” “The mother of Jesus was there.” The person of Mary mediator plays a central part in re establishing the relationship between her Son Jesus, the Only mediator, but then she moves into the background to contemplate Jesus who saves us. Mary is a model for us, since she is so present. She perceives the problem that arises : “The wine for the wedding feast has run out!” She tells her Son Jesus about the situation in a very simple way, and then she withdraws. She has set the ball rolling, she has nothing else to do now, only to be present and to contemplate what has come about : the Good News of the Living Word of Jesus has been announced. Following Mary, Bernadette said yes to the Word of God given to her the person of Mary. “Your Word is a delicious wine” said the Song of Solomon. I n Lourdes, the Gospel is lived out with Jesus and Mary in a humble way. When Mary was choses by God, she said she was the servant of the Lord. In Lourdes, she chose the poorest girl living in the village. The poor are on the outskirts of society: lacking recognition, they are despised because of their littleness and their poverty. Bernadette and her family were in an extremely difficult situation in Lourdes, for out of all the families in this small town, her family was the most humiliated. Lourdes will be like Cana for Bernadette and Mary will be able to say once again : They have run out of wine, they don’t have the Living Word of God. The “good wine” will come as far as Bernadette, to the poor girl who had been discarded! “Jesus said : What do you want of me, woman? My hour has not yet come. His mother said to the servants : Do everything he tells you.’ There were six stone water jars standing there, meant for the ablutions that are customary among the Jews; each could hold twenty or thirty gallons. Jesus said to the servants, ’Fill the jars with water’, and they filled them to the brim. Then he said to them, ’Draw some out now and take it to the president of the feast’. They did this; the president tasted the water that had turned into wine. Having no idea where it had come-though the servants who drew the water knew-the president of the feast called the bridegroom and said :”Everyone serves good wine first and the worse wine when the guests are well -wined; but you have kept the best wine till now.’“We can suppose that the help brought by Mary was lived out with a full respect of Jesus’ freedom. She announces already the Passion, Jesus has espoused our humanity, becoming one of us. This scene can become a model of our own way of acting as it indicates just how far we can go in asking for our Salvation. Practically speaking, it is as far as a substitution in the perspective of the others’ growth, of their autonomy, free expression, own contribution. In Lourdes, Mary made the choice of Bernadette. At that time, life was very hard for her. Like servants of the gospel, she had to go through many trials! She faced up to them in poverty and in humility, thanks to God’s help. Situated on God’s level, Bernadette was a source of surprising grace for those around her. The sisters of Nevers received her in their congregation, since it was linked to Mary.”This was the first of Jesus’ signs; it was at Cana in Galilee. He revealed his glory, and his disciples believed in him.“After this, he went down to Capernaum with his mother and his brothers and his disciples, and they stayed there a few days.” It is up to each one of us to know how to keep as reference the Word of the Lord like Mary : “May it be done to me according to your Word!” Throughout her whole life and existence, Mary’s action is lived out under this declaration :“I am the servant of the Lord.” We discover in Lourdes a land for the Gospel message. There we find simplicity and thanksgiving for God’s Presence amongst mankind. The poor and sick recognize each other there. When the Church is on pilgrimage in Lourdes, it is always with the sick and the poor. Here we find the Church and see how prayer and sharing and care for one another prevail. All the peoples of the earth are present in Lourdes, and amongst them, all who in this world are looked down upon. In Lourdes they receive recognition in their relationship to God. It is in her poverty that Bernadette is a messenger of Peace and of Love.

We ask for the grace that our water be changed into wine!