Reflections - January 17, 2016

“The mother of Jesus said to him, “They have no wine”.  Jn. 2:3.
A few years ago while visiting Israel I saw a caravan of cars, one after the other, in the desert.  I asked the guide who they were and where they were going.  He explained that is was a wedding and they were carrying enough food and drinks to last for several days because it was very important that nothing was missing from the “several days that the feast would last”.
On this 2nd Sunday of Ordinary time, the Gospel of John presents us with Jesus’ first miracle together with His mother Mary in a wedding.  We should ask ourselves this question:  Why did Jesus come into this world?  The response would be:  “to save us from original sin”.
If we read the Book of Genesis we see that sin entered the world through the disobedience of a family to God’s plan.  Therefore it was logical that when Christ, the Son of God, would bring the grace of salvation to the world, He would start with a family.  Remember that is was in a family where Christ lived His hidden life and that is why his Mother was not indifferent to the need of that couple.  “They have no wine”, Jn. 2:3.  Mary notices the problem.  She knows of necessity.  She knows her people and her culture and she does not live “oblivious to the needs of her neighbor”.  She lives with her eyes wide open, but Jesus reminds her that “My hour has not yet come”.  Yet the Mother knows that in her Son love and compassion overcome “time lines” and the miracle happens.
What is the lesson for our spiritual life?  That Jesus is always present in our family if we invite Him and allow him to act.  His mother and His disciples are signs of the presence of the Church.
That is why a Catholic marriage is celebrated in the Church, not in a park or on a beach.  We are part of the Church through Baptism.  Also in the Sacrament of Marriage, the “grace that does not end” is received.  It is the new wine of joy and faith that makes us stronger to carry every day our crosses of work, to have a good marriage relationship, and especially the wisdom to educate teenagers.  Remember that one day a promise was made to be faithful “through joys and sorrows, sickness and health all the days of your life”.  If “the wine” of faithfulness starts to get scarce in your marital commitment ask Mary to intercede with her Son.
Also when receiving Communion ask yourself if you are concerned with the needs of so many young couples and those not so young who “lack the wine” of good family relations.  Do you support them?  Do you help them to participate in Family Encounters or giving them advice yourself?  Do you seek who could give them good matrimonial council?