Our Lady of Lourdes

Our Lady of Lourdes
Isaiah 66:10-14  +  John 2:1-11

“Do whatever He tells you.”

It’s often said, and rightly so, that in all things Mary leads us to her Son.  That’s why it’s false to claim that devotion to Our Lady takes away anything from Our Lord.

Today’s Gospel passage on this feast of Our Lady of Lourdes, set at the wedding at Cana, illustrates something more specific about devotion to Mary.  In all things, Mary leads the faithful Christian to listen to her Son, and to do whatever He tells the faithful Christian to do.

St. John, the Beloved Disciple to whose care Jesus entrusted His Mother, and who was entrusted by Jesus to His Mother, is the only one of the four evangelists to record the events of the wedding at Cana.  St. John notes that Mary said to Jesus that the newly married couple had no wine.  We might ask, “Did Mary really need to tell Jesus this?”  Jesus, being divine, possessed (and possesses) omniscience.  He knows all things, including small details such as a newly married couple running out of wine at their wedding reception.  Mary, of course, knew that her Son was divine, but she pointed this lack out to her Son because that is what a good mother does:  she cares not only for her own flesh and blood, but also for all those in need.

We might say that the events recorded in today’s Gospel passage foreshadow Mary’s title as “Mother of the Church”, which is celebrated on the day after Pentecost.  In that light, the role of Our Lady of Lourdes becomes clearer.  Pilgrims visit Lourdes en masse because they know not only of Mary’s love for them, but also that her intercession strengthens them to serve others, especially those most in need of care.