One Monk of the Order of Saint Benedict

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The Word of God and the Body of God reveal each other -- the homily worships both.

July 05, 2010

For the Feast of Our Lady of Refuge, July 5

Our Lady, Refuge of Sinners, Patroness of Baja California, Alta California, and the Diocese of San Diego

John 2:1-11

This beginning of the signs the Lord Jesus did, and this beginning of his disciples believing in him, happened through the motherly care of his mother.
She spoke out to him when she saw the wedding— the new life of man and woman as husband and wife— had run into poverty: “They have no wine.”
This Holy Gospel according to John calls this sign the beginning.
This same Gospel will mark the end of the signs, with the Lord saying, “It is fulfilled,” or “It is finished,” or, most literally, “This is the goal.”
At both this beginning of the signs at Cana and the fulfillment, end, or goal of the signs at Calvary, the mother of the Lord is present.
Today at Cana, before the Lord followed the concern of his mother, he upheld that his “hour has not yet come.”
Once his hour had come, his mother followed his concern to Calvary.
There the Lord would speak out to his mother on behalf of his disciple who had begun to believe in him at Cana: “Woman, there is your son.”
In both places, Cana and Calvary, there was a lack of wine.
At Cana: no wine at all until the Lord changed water into it.
At Calvary: no water, but only wine gone bad into vinegar.
Just as at Cana, his mother at Calvary could have said, “They have no wine.”
All these things bind Cana and Calvary to each other.
At the beginning and the goal of the signs of the Lord Jesus, his mother is present.
In both places she serves as a mother to more than her son.
At Cana, she is a watchful mother intervening for man and woman beset by poverty.
There she is also the motherly midwife who oversees the birth of the faith of the disciples of her son.
At Calvary, as the great signs of her Son reach their fulfillment and goal, her own motherly apostolate has a new beginning, as her Son gives her his disciple to mother.
Those who follow the Lord in his Gospel, who see his signs in his Gospel from beginning to goal, who believe in him, will see that the Lord’s mother is also a disciple’s mother.
Indeed, the Gospel itself testifies at the fulfillment and the goal of the Lord’s signs in the presence of his mother: “from that hour the disciple took her into his home.”
The refuge of her motherhood is older than the Gospel text itself.
It began with her pregnancy in Nazareth, and continues now as she still intercedes with her Son for his disciples.
In the Spirit of the Gospel, a papyrus text from about the year of our Lord 300 holds the following prayer to his mother.
We take refuge beneath you,
O holy Mother of God.
In the midst of our needs,
do not despise our pleadings,
but always free us from all dangers,
O glorious and blessed Virgin.

That God Be Glorified in All