The poor bride. Everything had been going so well, now the only thing people were going to remember was the wedding that ran out of wine. It was too late when the word got to the top table. Did they not notice hours ago that the wine was running out? It could have been fixed. There was nowhere to get wine now, the damage was done – it’s all over, let’s go home. In fact one or two could be seen heading for the door. “We’re not staying here! If you won’t look after us we’ll drink elsewhere”. The heart sinking feeling of the wheels coming off the wagon casts a shadow on what was supposed to be the greatest of days.
The ones who left woke up the next morning, itching to talk about the disaster that had been with some fellow guests. “How did you get on at the wedding with no wine?”, a chortled question. The response was not what was expected. “It is a pity you left. It was only talk that the had wine run out. In fact they brought some in just after you went out, the like of which I never tasted! We drank, we danced, we laughed. It was the best wedding I was ever at!”
The wine often seems to be at an end. Scandal, abandonment, divisions seem to pull Christ’s bride – the Church – to pieces. Many within and without mourn or long for her demise as the old wine runs out. Just like Cana, Christ is here. Just like Cana he changes water into wine – beautiful new wine. This is happening all around us. At the wedding only a few understood what happened, the disciples, his mother, the drawers of the water – even the steward didn’t seem to get it. Mary said to them and says to us ‘do whatever he tells you’ and all will be well. At Cana that evening the wine did indeed run out. The couple no doubt knew this and figured out exactly what Jesus did. Christ never lets down his bride.
(Fr Shane Crombie, first published in Intercom, Dec. 2012)