“Looking up, Jesus saw the crowds approaching and said to Philip, ‘Where can we buy some bread for these people to eat’?” (John 6: 5)
We are familiar with this narrative of today’s Gospel (John 6:1-15) where Jesus multiplied the loaves and the fishes and fed the crowd. As we see from the verses that follow, Jesus was referring to holistic nourishment: physical and spiritual food. Today, once again in isolation for many of us, let us focus on the nourishment of the Word of God.
Quoting the Prophet Amos 8:11: “Behold, there shall come days when I will send famine upon the land, not a hunger for bread which nourishes the body, nor a thirst which water satisfies, but the hunger and thirst to hear the Word of God,” St. Eugene wrote:
Often the action of grace precedes the preaching of the Gospel and when hearts are touched by the first words of this marvelous preaching, they feel the need to open themselves […] to receive the divine seed.
Bishop de Mazenod, Pastoral Letter 1844.
May this day be an opportunity for us to spend time open ourselves to receive the divine seed – and allow that seed to bear fruit in ourselves and others.
May it also be a day when we become aware of people in our neighborhood repeating the words of Jesus: “Where can we buy some bread for these people to eat?” – and respond generously to the needs of a foodbank or feeding scheme in our area.