Goffine’s Devout Instructions – Second Sunday after Epiphany

At the Introit the Church invites us to thank God for the incarnation of His only-begotten Son: “Let all the earth adore Thee, and sing to Thee, O God; let it sing a psalm to Your name, shout with joy to God, all the earth, sing you a psalm to His name, give glory to His praise.” Glory be to the Father, etc.

Prayer

Almighty and everlasting God, Who dost govern all things in heaven and on earth, mercifully hear the prayers of Thy people, and grant us Your peace in our days. Through Our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

Epistle – Roman 12:6-16

Brethren: We have different gifts, according to the grace that is given us: either prophecy, to he used according to the rule of faith, or ministry in ministering, or he that teaches in doctrine, he that exhorts in exhorting, he that giveth with simplicity, he that rules with carefulness, he that shows mercy with cheerfulness. Let love be without dissimulation. Hating that which is evil, cleaving to that which is good: loving one another with the charity of brotherhood: with honor preventing one another: in carefulness not slothful: in spirit fervent: serving the Lord: rejoicing in hope: patient in tribulation: instant in prayer; communicating to the necessities of the saints: pursuing hospitality. Bless them that persecute you: bless, and curse not. Rejoice with them that rejoice, weep with them that weep: being of one mind one towards another: not minding high things, but consenting to the humble. Be not wise in your own conceits.

What lesson does the Apostle give us in this epistle?

That we should hate that which is evil, and love that which is good; that we should love one another, and practice works of mercy; that we should be solicitous and fervent, as in the service of God. We should cooperate with the grace of God, and pray instantly.

Practical Instructions for Superiors

They must expect a severe judgment who seek office only for the sake of emolument, caring little for their duty, and regarding bribes and presents rather than justice.

Aspiration

O God, give us Thy grace to follow faithfully what Saint Paul teaches us of humility and charity, that we may have compassion on all who are in need, and not exalt ourselves above our neighbors, but, humbling ourselves with the humble, may merit, with them, to be exalted. Amen.

Gospel – John 2:1-11

Goffine's Devout Instructions illustration of Christ changing water to wine at the wedding of CanaAt that time there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee, and the Mother of Jesus was there. And Jesus also was invited, and His disciples, to the marriage. And the wine failing, the Mother of Jesus saith to Him: They have no wine. And Jesus saith to her: Woman, what is to Me and to thee? My hour is not yet come. His Mother saith to the waiters: Whatsoever He shall say to you, do ye. Now there were set there six water-pots of stone, according to the manner of the purifying of the Jews, containing two or three measures apiece. Jesus saith to them: Fill the water-pots with water. And they filled them up to the brim. And Jesus saith to them: Draw out now and carry to the chief steward of the feast. And they carried it. And when the chief steward had tasted the water made wine, and knew not whence it was, but the waiters knew who had drawn the water: the chief steward calls the bridegroom, and saith to him: Every man at first sets forth good wine, and when men have well drank, then that which is worse; but thou hast kept the good wine until now. This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested His glory, and His disciples believed in Him.

Why was Jesus present at the wedding with His Mother and disciples?

1. In order there to reveal His majesty, and by that means to establish and confirm the belief in His divinity.

2. To show that marriage is pleasing to God.

3. To let us understand how pious the bridegroom and bride were.

4. To teach us that those pleasures are permitted which are in accordance with reason and Christianity, and neither sinful nor leading to sin.

Why did Mary intercede for the bride and bridegroom when the wine was failing?

She was sorry for them, for she is the tender-hearted mediatrix of the afflicted and destitute. Besides, the number of the guests had been considerably increased by the presence of Jesus and His disciples, so that the wine was not sufficient for all.

What is the meaning of the words, “Woman, what is that to Me and to thee?”

According to the idiom of the Hebrew language, they mean as much as, “Mother, be not anxious; I will provide the wine as soon as the hour appointed by My Father is come.” Jesus did not mean to rebuke His Mother, but He thus gave her, and all who were present, to understand that He had not received the power of working miracles as the son of woman, but that He possessed it as the Son of God, and should use it according to the will of His Father.

Aspiration

I thank Thee, O Jesus, for the grace of knowing Thy divinity; grant that I may persevere in this knowledge till death, in order to enjoy the contemplation of Your Godhead in eternity.

– Goffine’s Devout Instructions