Taste and See: drink deeply, drink well


Saving draught, Marseilles

On Sunday, the Second Sunday in Ordinary Time, we heard the account of the first of the series of Signs which are given such prominence in John’s Gospel.

There was a wedding at Cana in Galilee. The mother of Jesus was there, and Jesus and his disciples had also been invited. When they ran out of wine, since the wine provided for the wedding was all finished, the mother of Jesus said to him, ‘They have no wine.’ Jesus said ‘Woman, why turn to me? My hour has not come yet.’ His mother said to the servants, ‘Do whatever he tells you.’

There were six stone water jars standing there, meant for the ablutions that are customary among the Jews: each could hold twenty or thirty gallons. Jesus said to the servants, ‘Fill the jars with water’, and they filled them to the brim. ‘Draw some out now’ he told them ‘and take it to the steward.’

They did this; the steward tasted the water, and it had turned into wine. Having no idea where it came from – only the servants who had drawn the water knew – the steward called the bridegroom and said; ‘People generally serve the best wine first, and keep the cheaper sort till the guests have had plenty to drink; but you have kept the best wine till now.’

This was the first of the signs given by Jesus: it was given at Cana in Galilee. He let his glory be seen, and his disciples believed in him.

John 2:1-11

At the invitation to Communion we are invited that we are invited to the supper, the wedding banquet, of the Lamb. In response we acknowledge our unworthiness, lack of preparedness et al (like those responsible for the provisioning of Cana’s wedding!).

Lord, I am not worthy
that you should enter under my roof…

We are also sustained by what is revealed of God in the whole of salvation history and profess our faith in God’s love for us:

…only say the word
and my soul shall be healed.

The Lord has uncorked the bottle and there is no sign that he wants to put it back in again. The celebrations of mercy, his making all things new, continue…

Photograph of sarcophagus in the Abbey of St Victor, Marseilles. The upper tier is comprised of images with a Eucharistic/festive/salvific  theme – the deer that drink from running streams; and the other side of the Chi-Rho symbol, the wedding feast of Cana; and Israel’s trophy of giant grapes discovered in the Promised Land. (c) 2013, Allen Morris


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