SUNDAYS
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2nd Sun Year c
Sunday 16th January 2022


Image supplied by Sr Kym Harris
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Exposition

Christian conversion is promoted by conversation. This section is a response to and a development on the knowledge gained from the commentary section.

This Sunday's Exposition

Can you imagine what Mary said to Jesus as they were walking away from the feast? I think it would be along the lines of: ‘A few cases of wine, yes, but barrels full!’ And I think his reply would have been along the lines of, ‘Get used to it!’ Abundance! That is what Jesus is about in John’s Gospel – living water to the Samaritan woman, bread from heaven to the crowds, light of the world to the man born blind, life forever to Mary and Martha! Far more than anyone could have hoped or imagined.

The crucial symbol in this miracle story is those six stone water jars. They were used for ritual religious purification. At best, they provided a physical sign of a person’s desire to be clean before God. Which is about all ‘our’ religious practices can do – stress our weakness and failure and show our desire to be better. But Jesus wants to offer more. Wine is said, in the Psalms, to be the gift of God, given to cheer the human heart. It was also the sign of messianic fullness and joy. In giving an abundance of the best wine, Jesus was signalling the rich, full life that he wants to offer.

But do we accept it? Christians get a bad press in our current society. Too often, we are presented as sad, serious, even ‘party poopers’. And, sad to say, I think there are grounds for this. We do come across as miserable. If we practice our religion focussing on ourselves, all we have in our jars is water – and that is too thin for joy. We have to change our focus to the grace being offered by God, then we will find that we can do whatever Jesus tells us, and that amazing transformations can take place, even in and sometimes in spite of the worst of situations.

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