Jesus revealed his glory, and his disciples believed in him. John 2:11
whose Son revealed his glory at Cana of Galilee:
help us to believe and obey,
so that, as our Saviour promised,
we may be filled with the wine of new life
and show forth his joy and love;
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the
Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.
- Isaiah 62:1-5
- Psalm 36:5-10
- 1 Corinthians 12:1-11
- John 2:1-11
- Nehemiah 8:1-3, 5-6, 8-10
- Psalm 19
- 1 Corinthians 12:12-31
- Luke 4:14-21
A Thought to Ponder
Epiphany 2 – John 2:1-11
At a wedding feast in Cana, Jesus told them, “Fill the jars with water . . . Draw some out now and take it to the headwaiter.”
Today’s Gospel is John’s account of Jesus’ first great “sign”: the transformation of water into wine at the wedding feast at Cana. For the churches of the East, the miracle at Cana is the fourth great event of their celebration of the Lord’s Epiphany or manifestation to the world (the first three: his birth at Bethlehem, the adoration of the magi and his baptism at the Jordan by John).
Cana evokes two important Scriptural symbols that point to the Messiahship of Jesus:
First, wine in abundance was considered a sign for Israel of the Messianic age to come (one example is Isaiah 54:5-14). The water in the six large stone jars used for the ritual washings mandated by the first covenant law is transformed by Jesus into Messianic wine, prefiguring the new covenant to be sealed in Jesus’ blood (which we celebrate in the wine of the Eucharist).
Second, the limitless love of God for his people is described throughout Scripture in terms of marriage. Today’s first reading from Isaiah is a beautiful example of this tradition. It is the strongest (yet still far from perfect) image we have to understand the depth of God’s love for his people.
The evangelist John pulls together these two powerful Messianic symbols of wine and marriage to introduce the public ministry of Jesus, the promised Messiah and bridegroom.
A final note: In verse 4 of today’s Gospel, Jesus is not as brusque toward his mother as he sounds to us in the English translation of the text. The address “Woman” was a common courteous form of address in Jesus’ time. We do not have in modern English an equivalent of this idiomatic expression.
The love of God is manifested at its most powerful in the love between husband and wife, in marriages that are sacraments, in marriages in which Christ is the always-present Wedding Guest. As ministers of the marriage sacrament, husbands and wives, in their love for one another, may mirror for all of us the great love of God in our midst.
At Cana, Jesus offers for the first time the “new wine” of Gospel hope and re-creation. We, too, are called to see our world with eyes of faith in order that we might bring the possibilities of such hope – hope that transforms hurt into reconciliation, despair into confidence, alienation into community.
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