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During the wedding feast at Cana, we learn that it is the job of the groom to supply the wine, however, Jesus seems to be acting like the groom because He provides lots of wine. In the next chapter, John the Baptist says that he is happy to be the best man of the groom. In the very next chapter, amazingly, Jesus, the groom, meets a woman with marital “issues.” The woman meets the bridegroom, and engages in a theological discussion about fidelity. When you read the Gospel of John, you may have asked why there are so many references about marriage. If you can’t figure it out, ask yourself what happens when people get married. They have kids. This is the reason Jesus came, to create children of God and for this reason He is the groom. The reason I bring up the marriage theme is Jesus. Once again, in this weeks’ gospel, He is the groom.
Jesus talks to His disciples as if He were a man who wants to get married. On the night before Jesus died, He told His disciples, “I am going to prepare a place for you and I will come back to you again and take you to Myself so that where I am, you also may be.” These are the words a young man would use to propose marriage. He would get down on one knee and say the girl, “I am going to my father and prepare a place for you and I will come back and take you to myself so that where I am, you also may be.” After the proposal, the young man would go back to his father and tell him, “Guess what? I am getting married.” Dad would then say, “Oh brother, I better add an extra room to the house for you both.” It could take few days or even weeks to get the room ready. The day the room is ready is the day of the wedding. When dad says the room is ready, the son gets his pals and they march into the village of the bride. They will all be playing drums, cymbals and trumpets as they go. You would hear the music as they enter the village. All the young engaged ladies in the village hear the music and say, “I wonder if it is my guy?” The groom will find his bride, bring her to his father’s house and they will get married. The party could last for days. That is the picture Jesus wants us to have when He comes to us and brings us to the Father’s house.
On the day my mother died, our Lord said this to her, “Before the first star was created, My Father prepared a room for you…and we have been waiting ever since.” The day my mother died I was sitting on the corner of the bed in tears while mom was at a wedding party. We do not like death because we don’t see the other side. When the disciples were sad and weepy about Jesus leaving before He died, Jesus had to tell them about the other side.
The ancients thought that death was really sleep. They would say, “It can’t be that bad because everyone likes to sleep.” Jesus raised the bar. Death is no longer sleep; it is a wedding party. I think sometimes we forget that we are going home.
I was in the church waiting for the bride to come so I could officiate the wedding. She was one hour and five minutes late. That is a long time. When she finally came down the aisle, she apologized to me for being late. Apparently, the limo driver forgot to read in the paper about the parade that was to take place in the city and got stuck in traffic. I asked her, “How did you get here?” She said, “I got out of the limo, walked down the street and took a cab. Like I say, sometimes we run into road blocks to our final destination. We need someone who knows how to get us home. When we die, Jesus is the only one who can come to us, and say, “I will come and take you to Myself. Where I am, you also may be.”
Here is the faith lesson. The greatest thing that ever happened to me is that I am a son with a very large inheritance: eternal life. No one can take that from me. No matter how bad it gets, no matter what happens to you in life, no one can ever take away your inheritance. You are a child in the royal Divine family. Christ was a groom who provides the wine for the wedding feast and it is the role of the groom to bring us home to the Father’s house.Back to All Homilies