The Wine of Renewal

At Mass yesterday at Christ the King, Fr. Dale offered a different way of thinking about the Gospel account of the wedding feast of Cana, the episode in John’s Gospel about which I wrote yesterday.

Fr. Dale spoke of Mary as addressing more than the absence of wine when she spoke to her son. (“They have no wine.”) Rather, he suggested, Mary was addressing the empty state of the religious lives of the people. She could see that something new, something intoxicating was necessary to bring life to their arid lives. So, on behalf of the people, she asked her son (“compelled” was the word Fr. Dale used) to do something.

And Jesus responded, Fr. Dale suggested, not with a “razzle-dazzle” miracle (although he did acknowledge that it was a awfully good one), but with a sign – with an act that pointed to something new – something made new in the Incarnation. That is, God’s presence in and among us. Jesus himself is the new wine – the limitless sign of our renewal.

Near the end of his homily, Fr. Dale reminded us that with Jesus’ spirit animating and invigorating us, we are the sacrament of his presence here on earth. He ended saying, “Jesus is more than a miracle worker, and we are vastly more than we think we are.”