THE MIRACLE OF THE WEDDING AT CANA: HOW A JEWISH MOTHER’S GUILT TRIP LED TO THE BEGINNING OF OUR LORD’S PUBLIC LIFE, AND ULTIMATELY TO OUR SALVATION THROUGH HIS DEATH ON THE CROSS: SOMETHING TO BE THANKFUL FOR IN THIS MARIAN MONTH OF MAY.
I was just thinking today about how similar a Jewish Mother’s neurotic guilt trips are to Catholic guilt trips that have been passed down to us by our own Mothers, priests and nuns overs the years. I got to thinking about just how that must’ve come about and I fell upon the scenario in the Bible about the Wedding Feast at Cana, where Our Lord, by performing his first miracle of turning water into wine, began his public life and foreshadowed his ultimate and perfect sacrifice of himself on the cross on Good Friday, which was presaged by the institution of the Holy Eucharist and the Priesthood on Holy Thursday the day before.
One can just imagine the wedding feast with everybody getting plastered and running out of wine and the wine steward and Father of the bride, not wanting to bring shame upon himself and his daughter, are at a loss as to what to do. Mary, being the good and virtuous Jewish Mother, sees an opportunity to egg on her son Jesus, who is probably watching the proceedings with a detached sense of bemusement, to intervene and perform a miracle and reveal his divine nature prematurely, or at least ahead of when Jesus was possibly thinking of doing so, whenever that was to be.
She approaches her beloved son and pipes up, saying, ‘son, they’re out of wine! Why don’t you do something!?’
‘Ma!’ Says Our Lord, in exasperation, ‘what do you want me to do? Like, who do you think I am, anyways? GOD or something? Sheesh! I ain’t ready for this shtick awright? So knock it off, will ya Ma?’
Whereupon Our Lady valiantly retorts ‘Whaddaya mean you ain’t ready? Oy ve, look at all these people son, you’re shamin’ me in front of all of them!’
‘Ma, how can they be shamin’ ya, theys all hammered! Day don’t give a hoot! So knock it off will ya Ma!?’
‘Hammered schmammered! Now don’t be givin’ your Mother no lip, Sonny boy! Now I’m telling ya theys outta wine! So whatta ya gonna do, just stand there and make me look bad?
‘Ma for the last time, I told ya knock it off fer Chrissakes!’
‘Exactly what I’m tellin’ ya son, I’m doin’ it fer yor sake. You gotta be somebody someday ya know!’
Whereupon Our Lady instructed the servants to ‘do whatever he tells you’, and the rest, as they say, is history.
Funny how a little Jewish matriarchal guilt trip can go a long way in moving the course of human civilization forward! Just think if the seeds of Jewish Motherly guilt had never been sown into Our Lord’s consciousness at a moment when he was probably still vacillating about the nature of his divinity and the timing of his entry into public ministry, we would have probably never have had the same results regarding the course of salvation history and the nature of the Catholic Church’s clerical and religious grasp on the notion of guilt as a tool or instrument of guiding our conscience in the proper direction would have never have developed in the manner it did.
So in this Marian Month of May, let us thank Our Blessed Mother for the great gift of this her Jewish Maternal instinct to chide her offspring into action for it indeed led to the bearing of the fruits of eternal salvation through Christ our Paschal Lamb making his perfect and holy sacrifice once and for all on the cross for the salvation of souls.
Who would’ve thought that running out of booze could be so beneficial to humanity?