Holy Land Pilgrimage

They have no wine

February 12, 2020

Cana is one of those places in the Bible that simply sticks out for people. Instantly people associate Cana with weddings and the beginning of Jesus’ miracles at his mother’s urging, “They have no wine” (John 2:3). Simply put, they have no joy. They have gone as far as they can go with Christ. It is time for him to change everything.

​The heart of the story of Cana is a story of vocation. The couple whom Jesus, his mother, and his disciples were celebrating were beginning their vocations as a married couple; while Jesus, his mother, and his disciples were beginning a new chapter of their own journey to sainthood, a new vocation following Christ.

​As I reflect on the story of Cana within the hallowed halls of the Church built in the late 19th century, the words of the steward began to take shape, “Every man serves the good wine first; and when men have drunk freely, then the poor wine; but you have kept the good wine until now” (John 2:10). Life without Christ is very similar, we think that what we are experiencing, the life we are living is filled with joy and vigor, but it slowly degrades into the lies of this world until it becomes fleeting moments of satisfaction followed by seeking our next moment of happiness. Ultimately, we realize it is an illusion, a descent from one gratification to the next.

​However, with Christ, everything changes. We go from living life on our own, to the sweetest, choicest, most satisfying adventure by the grace of Christ. Ultimately, this is the discovery of our vocation, our path to sainthood – whether it be marriage, the priesthood, religious life, or consecrated single life. The Lord is never outdone in generosity and desires to satisfy every desire with overflowing joy.

​It brings a whole new reality and comfort by the words of Our Mother, “Do whatever he tells you” (John 2:5).


Robert Ryan
Archdiocese of Chicago

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