From the beginning of Christian belief, our tradition has traced in the feeding of the crowd, Christ’s gift of himself in the Eucharist where Jesus continues to multiply loaves to fill our deepest yearnings. As we leave Mass in which we have received the Holy Eucharist will we carry with us the Lord’s compassion and love or are we still handing out our crumbs of indifference?
Saints Cyril and Methodius –
Jesus was only able to heal and touch the lives of others because he listened. My friends, we need to be better listeners in order that we might be better able to meet the needs of others. Are we really listening to our spouses, our children, our friends? How very often people are crying out for help and we are not hearing them because we are so tuned-in to ourselves and our own concerns.
Have you ever wondered if you have the right ingredients for your prayer? The woman in today’s Gospel had them all and her prayer was answered. She had love. She made the misery of her child her own. This woman had faith. It was a faith which came alive. This woman had unbeatable persistenceand the gift of cheerfulness. What is our conversation with God really like?
Jesus had far harsher words of condemnation for the spiritually proud than for the sensually fallen. He did not approve of the sins of the flesh any more than the sins of the heart. Both stand in the way of a loving relationship to God and neighbor. But he found sins of the heart bigger obstacles to loving God and others because these sins are often the sins of what might be called the “respectable sins of respectable people,” people who are scarcely aware of the damage they do.
Our Lady of Lourdes –
God’s love is so great that he wishes to give us every good thing. He is ever ready to hear our prayers. Nothing is too great or too trivial to share with our Father. Let us bring to God our hopes and desires, our worries and needs at every moment of every day.
St. Scholastica –
Lord Jesus, you healed the sick and suffering by the simple yet powerful act of your loving word and compassionate touch. As you have healed us, may we now be your ministers of healing the broken and reconciling the lost by our own simple outreach to those in pain or despair.
Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time –
Almighty God, you have shone the light of your life into our lives. Thank you for the privilege of knowing you and being called to be your light in the world. May we shine brightly for you, so that others may discover you and enter eternal life.
St. Jerome Emiliani, St. Josephine Bakhita –
Jesus looked at Nicodemus and saw that he could be transformed into a better person. He looked at a rugged fisherman who denied him but still saw him as leading the Church. He looked at the woman at the well who had five husbands and saw her as a witness of his cause, a disciple. We need to see others through the eyes of Jesus and maybe then we will take pity on the crowd.
Like John the Baptist we too have a responsibility to speak out and respect our own conscience, to make the truth known, to “repair the boat” and keep all of us from sinking. We can take action to repair the damage our world suffers because of an evil and selfish atmosphere.
St. Paul Mike and Companions –
No one can live without the help of others, and in helping others, we are blessed. It is with that understanding that Jesus sends the Twelve on their first missionary journey: the peace they offer blesses their own lives with peace; the work of healing mends their own brokenness; the repentance they preach changes them. This is the way of service for all of us.