Gospel Reflections (John 2:1-11)

Year C is the year of Luke’s gospel, but we start with this reading from John which recounts the symbolic beginning of Jesus’ ministry. It is full of riches. After the first reading from Isaiah it is impossible not to see this ‘sign’ (as John calls it) as a sign of that final wedding-feast of God and his people. Furthermore, in Jewish thought, water represents the Law: in an arid land water is the sign of life and is precious – just so, the Law of God is precious and gives life. Jesus transforms this water of the Law into the wine of the New Covenant – and in such generous quantities: over one hundred gallons of wine! Then there is Mary’s part: Jesus says his Hour has not yet come (and the reader knows that the Hour of Jesus will be the moment of his exaltation at the Cross and Resurrection), but Mary’s confident plea is a reminder to us of the power of her intercession. She will be mentioned no more in this gospel till she is present at the Cross, sharing the passion of her Son and joined to the Beloved Disciple to form the first Christian community. Why did Jesus choose to do this as his first miracle?

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