Imagine yourself that you are in an era where no schools or books to transmit the faith and knowledge to others. Period where reading is unfamiliar and books is quite unknown, period wherein the faithful relies mostly on visual liturgical art.
So let the Icon transpire its meaning and transmit to all faithful people the word of God.
So every time we see this Icon, stop for a moment and remember the story of the wedding at Cana (Although you don’t see in a narrative format of having tables and chairs, foods or party people etc) This Icon invites you to pause, connect and communicate in a prayerful way to God … it is you and God… away from a noisy busy surrounding of everyday life.
ICON OF MOTHER OF PERPETUAL HELP – PORTRAIT OF BIBLE’S ACCOUNT IN THE WEDDING AT CANA
(A reading from the Gospel according to John thru liturgical Art)
Mystical. Many faithful use this beautiful icon in their prayers, asking for the intercession of Mother Mary to help them in their heavy burdens in life. In this article allow me to show how this simple and humble Icon is use Then and Now as medium in transmitting the words of God. THEN – in a time when no printings press that help each ordinary person to read their own bible NOW – as we transmit to a new generation of letters.
So let the Icon transpire its meaning and transmit to all faithful people the word of God.
Begin observing on the radiant of GOLD that occupy the entire background, shimmering in every eye who stares on it, Gold as we all know is timeless thus, this reminds you of God’s glory, His omnipresent Omnipotent – His power is endless no boundaries – no limits no dimension.
The method of structuring the figures was in orthodox way. Main characters can be seen at the center of the canvass; the boldness in size which emphasizes the persons as spiritual giants compare to two small figures of Archangel that surrounds them. Gabriel posses cross and nails and Michael on the left hold the lance and gall-sop these two angels denotes of the future related events.
THE TWO MAIN CHARACTERS
MARY AND JESUS CHRIST
You may notice of Mary’s BLUE garment and wonder what does it mean? BLUE is the color of faith, of transcendence, humility, the mystery of divine life.
Move a little bit at the forehead of Mary and you can see the STAR – Star of David that denotes royal filial, unceasing protection to those in needs – our guiding star in the journey of life. But wait, Mother’s figure has something to transmit to us in her facial features; her EYES are large symbolizing faith in God, while the long and slender NOSE shows dignity. The MOUTH is small, to remind one to listen to God’s words and speak little.
Behold the Son of God – Jesus Christ. Gaze attentively to our Messiah. Lowly as we are, let us now bow our head and stare at Christ SANDALS. “AND THE WORD WAS GOD… AND THE WORD BECAME FLESH AND DWELT AMONG US” (from John’s Gospel Chapter1). God became flesh and walk with us; He feels what we feel, He touches the ground he journey and communicates to us – this is what his SANDALS are telling to us. Be humble in Christ TWO NATURE! How do we say that the Icon speaks about Christ two natures? Again as we bow our head we seen the different position of each sandals, one that perfectly fit reminds us of his nature as a TRUE MAN while the one clinging on one strings reminds us of his divine nature as TRUE GOD – one who needs nothing materially.
We can see his GREEN tunic and half-down external mantle in GOLD color – the sacred Icon shows GREEN color as regeneration a new beginning, a new life and a new covenant. But what is half-down external mantle in GOLD color transpires to us? As we mentioned above GOLD symbolize God’s omnipotent and half-down transpire the word that ALTHOUGH HE EXISTED IN THE FORM OF GOD, DID NOT REGARD EQUALY WITH GOD but HE STRIPPED HIMSELF AND TOOK THE FORM OF A SERVANT (Phil.2:6-7).
As we already describes Christ, never forget to note the left-hand of Mother Mary in holding Christ, it shows of a maternal care – MOTHER OF GOD: BEHOLD, YOU WILL CONCIEVE IN YOUR WOMB AND BEAR A SON… THEREFORE, THE HOLY CHILD DEVELOPING INSIDE YOU WILL BE CALLED THE SON OF GOD (from Luke’s Gospel)
THE EVENT- THE WEDDING AT CANA
Wide and humbly, her eyes stare on us as if we are invited and part in the wedding.
Jn 2:1-2 “And the third day, there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee: and the Mother of Jesus was there. And Jesus also was invited, and his disciples to the marriage.
Jn2:3 “And the wine failing..” wine is essential in that celebration(wedding), by declaring “wine failing” means a big trouble( I work before in a wine store and making wine is not just as instant, it took several months or years to ferment grapes juice to produce wine so that words really a big trouble), thus it invite us to reflect on this event; like in our everyday life we experience problems lots of problems that sometimes it is hard to solve and almost crush us down.
“the Mother of Jesus saith to him: They have no wine” Then, we can see here that Mother Mary portrait as a very concern and loving mom to us. SHE REALLY CARES. Look, she stares on us in this Icon.
Notice the right hand of Mother Mary and hands of Jesus in the Icon, What is the meaning of this? In a careful analysis read Jn.2:4 “And Jesus saith to her: Woman, what is that to me and to you?” Clearly, Mother Mary is Immaculate Conception1, Christ own words equate her Mother on his sinless nature by saying “what is that TO ME AND TO YOU?” The turned palm down into Christ hands shows that graces of redemption are in her keeping.
Jn2:5 “His Mother saith to the waiters: DO WHAT EVER HE SAYS”
Stare again in the Icon, as you feel the burden of having problems always remember Mother Mary staring and pleading on our behalf 2to her Son Jesus Christ to heal and help us to our problems and saying DO WHAT EVER HE SAYS and pointing her right hand fingers to her son Jesus Christ.
As we see the figure of Christ in the icon staring above; he reminds you of his words “when he looks at me, he sees the one who sent me” (Jn 12:45). Christ shows that GOD IS LOVE.
Jn 2:7: Jesus saith to them: Fill the waterpots with water. And they filled them up to the brim.”
1 “You are wrong; Jesus Christ is not equating Mary to be sinless like him or even declaring Mary as Immaculate Conception, What Christ saying is that his hour to perform a miracles is not yet come so he exclaims “what to me and to you?” - “don’t bother ourselves to their problems” [common objections made by protestant and some ignorant INManalo members] Good try but wrong. Let us examine the word of Christ in Jn.2:4 And Jesus saith to her: Woman, what is that to me and to you? My hour is not yet come. Wow, what a pure stylistic and prolific writer Apostle John is. Remember on my first article that John creates a Gospel styled/patterned in Genesis? “Yes but it’s not relevant to this” WRONG.
Examine this: what is the first word utter by Christ before he said “what to me and to you”? WOMAN. Correct. “Woman because Christ clearly manifests that Mary is not like him you know, a sinless and divine. So instead of calling her “Mother” he called her “Woman” to show that they are not equal in being sinless of Immaculate Conception.” WRONG “or maybe a sign of elevating himself and not consider her as her Mother” TOTALLY WRONG Christ being a Perfect Law he has to follow what the Law says about Honoring thy Mother. Ok, I will proceed for the kill so that you are IGNORANT NO MORE.
First, Christ mentioned the word WOMAN, he give us hint! Then second hint, John reminds us the book of Genesis. Got it?
In the book of Genesis the FIRST GOOD NEWS was heard [some biblical scholars and theologians call this as Protoevangelium] the TRIUMPH OF GOOD and THE DEFEAT OF EVIL.
Let us read it Gen.3:15: “And I will put enmity between you and the WOMAN, and between your seed and her seed; he will crush your head, and you will strike his.”
This is a basic theology; Christ calls her Mother “WOMAN” to magnify the promise of God in Genesis 3:15. Christ tells us that the “WOMAN” in protoevangelium is Mother Mary and the “SEED” of this woman is Him! [“so what to me and to you”]. Again, read it carefully, “I will put enmity between you and the woman” God is mentioning two parties; the Serpent and the Woman, Serpent here is describe as SINFUL [Master of Deception] then if this Good news tells about triumph of Good over evil we cannot say that Woman[Mary] here are partially sinful! To support the claim of Mary being sinless (Immaculate Conception) look the next sentence “and between your seed and her seed” SEED or OFFSPRING [remember that we are dealing here with ancient way of thinking: when they say offspring it refers to the character of the origin – Apple shall have an offspring of an apple also (not grapes or not orange)] Christ is the SEED, SINLESS. So when we go to John 2:4 “what to me and to you” Christ equating his sinless character to her Mother because he is the offspring of her that describe in Gen.3:15 thus declaring her Immaculate Conception! Wait! I appeal! If that is your argument, then if Christ is God and he is the offspring of Mary according to Gen3:15, you mean Mary is God also? WRONG! THE PROTOEVANGELIUM IS VERY CLEAR ON HIS DECLARATION, MARY HAS ONLY ONE NATURE - A HUMAN NATURE.
To be clear, Gen.3:15 God said that the enemy of the Serpent that has a SEED [the ORIGIN] is a HUMAN BEING. How? From his word itself "WO[MAN]" so what ever somersaulting we do; we cannot change the fact that she is 100% HUMAN.
THUS we can go back to your wrong premise; we know that the "seed" is Christ the "offspring" with two natures: True God and True Man but we cannot equate Mary to be also True God or for having Two Natures because in Protoevangelium she was mentioned as "WO[MAN]" a 100% Human Nature ONLY!
Ah basta si Felix ay Anghel! Ngeeeekk
2 Catholic Theologians and Biblical Scholars term this as GIBARAH