I am currently reading John Paul II’s “Love and Responsibility”. Our theme for the 2011 year is perfectly integrated with JP2′s insights on love. He says that authentic love means rejoicing when the other is rejoicing and suffering when the other is suffering. When I read this I said, “Well yeah I understand the suffering part, but what about the rejoicing.” Then it hit me. Love is not just trying to get someone out of a hole by throwing them a rope. It is physically crawling into the hole with them and climbing out together. Our Lord suffered with us to the point of death on a cross. He also rejoiced with us. Every time I read the Gospels I try to pinpoint a time when Jesus is smiling or laughing, even though it is not written in. Our Lord was not an anti-social droid. He was alive within the community and the nation of Israel. He rejoiced when others rejoiced. In the Wedding Feast at Cana, Christ restored the wine for the bride and groom. This must have been a sincere moment of happiness for him. Even though he knew that this public miracle would bring him out of the hidden area of his life into his ministry, the service which he rendered for the wedded couple was a period in which he rejoiced as they were rejoicing. This is authentic love and I imagine that he was laughing and smiling the whole time. It comes to the point where the suffering becomes a sacrifice and at certain times even the rejoicing is a sacrifice. Christ sacrificed his hidden mission from God in order to rejoice with the bride and groom and restore the very love which had been missing in marriage since Original Justice. Yes he restored wine, but wine is most often symbolized for love in the gospels.
As 2011 begins to creep up on us I pray that we can humble ourselves and ask for our wine to be restored. In the purely artistic sense, the time is long overdue for a resurgence in films that encompass this theme of love. The authentic love between human persons is only a glimmer of the Pure Agapic love of God, one that’s flame has never flickered but grows more fervently. If artists tap into this deep mystery of love, filmmaking will be changed forever.