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Sunday, January 18, 1998

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2nd Sunday Ordinary Time

Isaiah 62:1-5
Psalm 96
1 Corinthians 12:4-11
John 2:1-12

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why pray?

"For Zion's sake I will not be silent, for Jerusalem's sake I will not be quiet, until her vindication shines forth like the dawn and her victory like a burning torch." —Isaiah 62:1

At the wedding of Cana, Mary told Jesus: "They have no more wine" (Jn 2:3). Jesus seemed to respond that He wasn't going to do anything about it because His hour had not yet come (Jn 2:4). Then Jesus changed the water into wine (Jn 2:9). Did Jesus change His mind? Did Mary talk or pray Jesus into changing His mind? Can our prayers get God to do things for us?

The answer to these questions is "No." God doesn't change His mind (see Mal 3:6), and we don't have to talk or pray God into doing things for us. He loves us so much that He wants to do for us much more than we can ever want done.

The purpose of this conversation between Mary and Jesus may be to show us the importance and power of Mary's prayer and also of our prayers. Prayer is one of our major ways of participating in God's plan. We are not just the beneficiaries of the Lord's work; we are co-workers with Him (1 Cor 3:9). We are not merely incidental to the Lord's work; we are so important that we can even move up the timing of God's plan (see 2 Pt 3:12). Because the Lord has chosen to make us important, our prayers are extremely important. Pray accordingly.

Prayer:  Father, teach me why I pray.

Promise:  "It is one and the same Spirit Who produces all these gifts, distributing them to each as He wills." —1 Cor 12:11

Praise:  Alleluia! Jesus is "the Resurrection and the Life"! (Jn 11:25) Jesus, risen Savior, be forever praised! Consider ordering our prayer book, Praying For A New Pentecost.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Ralph J. Lawrence, June 1, 1997

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 9, 1997