Today in our gospel reading we celebrate Jesus’ first miracle, turning water into wine at the Wedding at Cana.
I’ve always wondered how our beloved Protestant brethren who believe in the virtue of teetotaling deal with this text. Moderation with alcohol is indeed a virtue, and alcohol can be so destructive at times that many good clergy have preached that it’s a sin to touch it.
But Episcopalians like wine at the altar and wine at the dinner table, so luckily it’s one of Jesus’ miracles that I can openly celebrate.
This Gospel text has everything I love about good Bible stories—complex character interactions, people making non sequiturs, important Bible personalities doing things that make you work to understand them.
Why does Mary care that they’re out of wine?
Did she tell Jesus hoping he would run to the corner store and pick some more up?
Why does Jesus speak to his mother in a way that seems uncomfortably rude to our modern ears? Was he embarrassed that she expected him to solve the problem?
This is great stuff, thick and juicy with conflict and possibility.