Spring 2006

The Miracle of Cana

Peter Henrici

“Yahweh’s nuptials with his people, this eschatological nuptial mystery, is the true ‘mystery’ of Cana.”

“Three wonders sanctify this day. Today the star guided the Wise Men to the Child in the crib. Today water became wine at the wedding feast. Today Christ our salvation was baptized in the Jordan”—thus sings the liturgy of the Church in the Office of Vespers for the sixth of January, the Feast of the Lord’s Epiphany. This threefold “today” is somewhat confusing since it encompasses a period of roughly thirty years and does not even reflect the actual chronology of events. This passage from Lauds for the Feast of the Epiphany only adds to the confusion: “Today the Church was wedded to the heavenly bridegroom. In the Jordan, Christ washed her clean of her sins. The Wise Men hurry with gifts to the wedding of the king. Water is transformed into wine and gladdens the guests.” Let us see if we can untangle this seeming confusion.

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