The Wedding Feast at Cana

In the biblical story of the Wedding at Cana Jesus turned water into wine. This was the first in a series of events and signs connected to his saving Passion, Death, and Resurrection.

Jesus’ first public miracle fittingly takes place during a wedding, a common setting for important events in the Bible and foreshadowing the Marriage Feast of the Lamb that takes place in Heaven.

The Gospel of John sets the event “on the third day”, at the end of a series of seven days of a new creation and new wedding story, with Jesus and the Virgin Mary replacing Adam and Eve as the main characters.

When Mary notices that the wedding party has run out of wine, she trusts that her Son will do what is necessary. Jesus responds to his mother’s intercession in a way that indicates that she has just initiated an important process.

By her concern for the wedding party and by instructing the servants to do whatever Jesus told them, Mary’s obedience and faith, so necessary in her future role as Mother of the Church, are highlighted.

Jesus instructed the servants and they filled six large stone jars to the top with 120-180 gallons of water. The head waiter tasted it and revealed that what was water was now the best wine.

Since these water jars were meant for ceremonial purification and washing they point toward Baptism in which Catholics are cleansed and transformed, becoming members of Jesus’ Church which is the Bride of Christ.

Jesus’ first miracle of turning water into wine, a symbol of divine love, would be surpassed at the Last Supper when He turned wine into his Blood, the Blood of the New and Everlasting Covenant.

Baptized Catholics receive the Blood of Jesus, the Bridegroom, along with his Body in the form of Bread and Wine each time that they receive the Eucharist.

In performing this miracle in public, Jesus manifested his glory causing the disciples to believe in Him. Along with the visit of the Magi and the Baptism of the Lord, Jesus’ miracle at Cana is regarded as an Epiphany.

Every three years, the story of the Miracle at Cana is read from the Gospel of John on the the Sunday after Epiphany, the Second Sunday of Ordinary Time in Year C of the lectionary.

Catholics meditate on the Wedding Feast at Cana as the Second Luminous Mystery when praying the Holy Rosary.

Jesus’ first miracle at a wedding is fitting:

Fr. Dan O’Reilly Online

God wants to marry humanity:

Fr. Brian Soliven

Jesus is the Bridegroom of the people of God:

Catholic News Service

On the third day there was a wedding in Cana in Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. Jesus and his disciples were also invited to the wedding. When the wine ran short, the mother of Jesus said to Him, “They have no wine.” [And] Jesus said to her, “Woman, how does your concern affect Me? My hour has not yet come.” His mother said to the servers, “Do whatever he tells you.” Now there were six stone water jars there for Jewish ceremonial washings, each holding twenty to thirty gallons. Jesus told them, “Fill the jars with water.” So they filled them to the brim. Then He told them, “Draw some out now and take it to the headwaiter.” So they took it. And when the headwaiter tasted the water that had become wine, without knowing where it came from (although the servers who had drawn the water knew), the headwaiter called the bridegroom and said to him, “Everyone serves good wine first, and then when people have drunk freely, an inferior one; but you have kept the good wine until now.” Jesus did this as the beginning of his signs in Cana in Galilee and so revealed his glory, and his disciples began to believe in him.

John 2: 1-11

The new Adam and new Eve of a new creation:

Catholic Productions

The conclusion of the narrative sounds like a judgment: “This, the first of his signs, Jesus did at Cana in Galilee, and manifested his glory; and his disciples believed in Him.” The wedding feast at Cana is more than a simple account of Jesus’ first miracle. Like a treasure chest, He guards the secret of his Person and the purpose of his coming: the awaited Groom starts off the wedding that is fulfilled in the Paschal Mystery. At this wedding Jesus binds his disciples to Himself in a new and final Covenant. At Cana Jesus’ disciples become his family and at Cana the faith of the Church is born. We are all invited to the wedding feast, because the new wine will never run short!

Pope Francis, General Audience, 8 June 2016

Jesus’ first sign initiates a sequence of events:

Pints With Aquinas

Jesus reveals Himself as the Divine Bridegroom:

Catholic Productions

The water into wine sets the stage for wine into blood:

Shalom World

The miracles of the multiplication of the loaves, when the Lord says the blessing, breaks and distributes the loaves through his disciples to feed the multitude, prefigure the superabundance of this unique bread of his Eucharist. The sign of water turned into wine at Cana already announces the Hour of Jesus’ glorification. It makes manifest the fulfillment of the wedding feast in the Father’s kingdom, where the faithful will drink the new wine that has become the Blood of Christ.

Catechism of the Catholic Church 1335

Celebrating marriage and a miracle in Cana:

Christian Media Center – English

The Truth, Goodness, and Beauty of the Catholic Church

Seeing the dream:

Beyond Damascus

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