Kristopher and KayLee, when you chose this day, July 2nd, to be your wedding day you were probably not aware that you were choosing an extra special date. We unite your hearts today in holy matrimony amidst Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Yesterday was the Solemnity of His Sacred Heart and today is the Memorial of her Immaculate Heart. We celebrate these two feasts so closely on the calendar, one after the other, because no two human hearts are so intimately united in a perfect love. I present them to you as role models for your love
Mary and Jesus were mother and Son. They were never married in the way we think of marriage, so how can they be role models for your marriage? In Jesus and Mary, we see the perfect man with the perfect woman, we see the New Adam together with the New Eve, we see the King and Queen of Heaven and Earth. Jesus is the Bridegroom and Mary is the flawless image of the Church, which is His Bride. By seeing how Jesus loves her and how Mary loves Him we can learn much about how men and women are to serve and love each other.
How does Jesus love Mary? For one thing, he listens to her. He is receptive to her wants and needs. It was true at the wedding feast of Cana, He worked a miracle to provide wine at her request, and it is still true now in heaven, where she continues to ask for good things for us. A good husband must be receptive to his wife’s wants and needs. On the other hand, in what manner do you think Mary asks things of Jesus? Mary does not nag Jesus, asking Him in plaintive tones. She doesn’t sit next to Jesus in Heaven and sigh, “I see you still haven’t taken care of the garbage down there.” Instead, I imagine she says to Him, “It would make me very happy if you would do this for me.” A good wife must allow pleasing her to be her husband’s joy, not his burden.
A good husband must die to himself in many ways for his family, and a good wife must support him through his sacrifices. Look how Jesus goes to the cross and offers Himself for the good of Mary and her children. He suffers for her and lays down his life for her. And how does Mary support Him? She is right there, at the foot of the cross, faithful and consoling. God gave Eve to Adam as a partner, to support him in the garden. Mary continues to be a helpmate to Jesus in His work of harvesting the vineyard of this world. A good husband lays down his life for his wife and a good wife must support him through his sacrifices.
From the cross, Jesus make Mary the mother of all Christians. He desired Mary to be the mother of many children, and now, Mary’s motherhood is perhaps her greatest joy. A good husband and wife must be open to children. This is the will of God for you and He will bless you with joy for saying “Yes” to Him.
The worship of God and following His will was at the center of the relationship between Jesus and Mary. Every Sabbath they came to join the worship at the synagogue (the Church of their day) and every day they said prayers and remained close to God. So too, God must be at the center of every good marriage. You must come to Mass every Sunday and pray every day. Good husbands and wives share the same mission in life, to assist each other and their children in getting to Heaven.
From earth to Heaven, Jesus led Mary through life with love, and Mary faithfully followed Him. A good husband must have the integrity not to phone it in, but to lead, and a good wife must have the courage to follow that lead. Kristopher and KayLee, May the hearts of Jesus and Mary reign in your homes. May you model their virtues on earth. And may you draw each other, and your children, to share their heavenly joy forever.