Today’s Gospel, the miracle at Cana, changing the water into vintage wine, is the third Epiphany, Revelation, of who Jesus is, here Lord of creation. This story offers several insights, not least to our understanding of the lavishness of God’s provision for his people. As we hear tell of the gallons of wine filling the goblets of the wedding guests, we might ask ourselves how our lives, and the life of our community, reflect this generosity. We are reminded too by this miracle how God takes the ordinary and makes it extraordinary. Are we ready to allow ourselves, ordinary as we are, to be taken and transformed, to be poured out in extraordinary ways in God’s loving self-giving and service?
You may recall that some while ago Trustees agreed that St. James’ would commit to co-sponsoring two refugees into Canada, in co-operation with the diocese and a family sponsoring group. The Mothers’ Union agreed to “hold” this on the parish’s behalf. The main responsibility for the parish is to hold in trust and then administer the funds raised for the refugees’ first year in Canada, although we hope there may be opportunity to assist in other ways, especially in the welcome to the refugees at YVR in due course.
Events were progressing slowly until November, when unexpectedly two places became available in the diocese’s 2021 allocation for applications. The parish is now co-sponsor for two Eritrean refugees who are currently in Israel, Semere and Jamal. The paperwork has been signed, and the parish is holding the necessary funds in trust. We are working alongside Seid from the Massawa Refugee Sponsorship Group. Seid is himself an Eritrean refugee who has been in Canada for over two years; thankfully he was joined this summer by his wife and daughter.
It is good news that this is moving forward, but the process will take some time. It may be two years still before we are able to welcome Semere and Jamal. Please remember them – and all refugees and displaced persons – in your prayers.
Download service booklet here: Liturgy at Home Epiphany 2 January 16 2022