Sunday 2nd August 18th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Gospel – Matthew 14:13-21
The feeding of the five thousand
When Jesus received the news of John the Baptist’s death he withdrew by boat to a lonely place where they could be by themselves. But the people heard of this and, leaving the towns, went after him on foot. So as he stepped ashore he saw a large crowd; and he took pity on them and healed their sick.
When evening came, the disciples went to him and said, ‘This is a lonely place, and the time has slipped by; so send the people away, and they can go to the villages to buy themselves some food.’ Jesus replied, ‘There is no need for them to go: give them something to eat yourselves.’ But they answered ‘All we have with us is five loaves and two fish.’
‘Bring them here to me’ he said. He gave orders that the people were to sit down on the grass; then he took the five loaves and the two fish, raised his eyes to heaven and said the blessing. And breaking the loaves handed them to his disciples who gave them to the crowds.
They all ate as much as they wanted, and they collected the scraps remaining; twelve baskets full. Those who ate numbered about five thousand men, to say nothing of women and children.
The Gospel of the Lord
The Mass intention is for Catherine Regan RIP
My dear friends we see in today’s Gospel this is the only miracle that is reported by all the four gospels, because the link to the Eucharist is obvious. The verbs used at the end of this miracle to describe what Jesus did with the bread are repeated at every mass.
The Eucharist has the same characteristics of this miracle: the community, the transformation of humble elements into what satisfies us and is a sign of God’s abundant gifts. Yet the gift is immeasurably greater: it is the body and blood of Christ. I stand in awe of this great gift, and ask for the grace to be grateful and to enter more deeply into this great mystery every time I offer the Sacrifice of the Mass.
This great miracle took place at the most unlikely moment: at the end of the day, when it was time to return home, people were tired and when the disciples realised they had only five loaves and two fishes.
Yet Jesus asked his disciples and his hearers to trust him, to “sit down” on the grass as if they were not in any hurry. Those who trusted got more than they needed.
• Take a moment to look back on your own experienced God’s generosity and ask yourself how do I trust God in the moments of crisis in my life.