Entering a church is, as anthropologist Margaret Visser says, “crossing the threshold.” We move from the secular to the sacred, yet in some mysterious way, in that space, the sacred redeems the secular. When we leave, the secular has been infused with the sacred.
Today the Gospel lesson united the two worlds, as sacramental action does, in the water that is turned to wine in the wedding feast at Cana. Thirty-gallon jars, our preacher said, were full of water for the rite of purification before the feast. Christ changes that water to wine and in the changing he purifies matter. Just so, our wine of the Eucharist, becomes his blood. Like those guests at the wedding, we too know the joy of the feast, the great banquet in Heaven, as the sacred infuses the secular, as the divine penetrates the material world.
The union of the Creator with his creation, this ongoing healing of the world, seemed appropriate for this last Sunday in Epiphanytide, this time of manifestation, of vision, of seeing. Soon we shall approach Lent with the little season of Pre-Lent. We shall follow Christ as he journeys through his time on earth, his passion, death and resurrection.
We are in mid-winter, with steely skies and icy breezes. Mount Diablo was dusted with snow this last week, following torrential rains and winds. But the days lengthen, nights contract, and a few flowers have appeared in my terra cotta pots. Time beckons us away from the Christmas crib and the astounding revelation of God come to us. Time pulls us into another year of weaving our lives with God, another year of healing and transformation, another year of discovering who we are meant to be.