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The feeding of the four thousand

Gospel Reading: Mk 8:1-10
In those days when there again was a great crowd without anything to eat, Jesus summoned the disciples and said, “My heart is moved with pity for the crowd, because they have been with me now for three days and have nothing to eat. If I send them away hungry to their homes, they will collapse on the way, and some of them have come a great distance.”

His disciples answered him, “Where can anyone get enough bread to satisfy them here in this deserted place?” Still he asked them, “How many loaves do you have?” “Seven,” they replied. He ordered the crowd to sit down on the ground.

Then, taking the seven loaves he gave thanks, broke them, and gave them to his disciples to distribute, and they distributed them to the crowd. They also had a few fish. He said the blessing over them and ordered them distributed also. They ate and were satisfied. They picked up the fragments left over – seven baskets. There were about four thousand people.

He dismissed them and got into the boat with his disciples and came to the region of Dalmanutha.

They ate and were satisfied
In the midst of the impending crisis, of a great crowd without anything to eat, Jesus takes all that the people have – seven loaves and some fish – even if it looks so little for so many. After giving thanks and blessing the loaves and the fish, Jesus breaks them and gives them to the disciples to distribute to the crowd. The people have their fill, and seven baskets of leftovers are gathered. So what began as a seeming hunger crisis ends up as a great banquet. With God, nothing is impossible.

Human life is confronted with all sorts of challenges, like hunger. We may not realize it, but many children die of hunger and malnutrition every minute in some parts of the world. At the same time, many people in rich countries waste so much food.

Perhaps the point of this miracle is that the little we have can be multiplied by God’s powerful hands so that we are saved from hunger and death. When we share what we have, no matter how seemingly little, with God’s blessing and power, miracles can happen, even daily.

Do you care about the hunger and thirst of others and share even the little that you may have?

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SOURCE: “365 Days with the Lord,” ST PAULS, 7708 St. Paul Rd., SAV, Makati City (Phils.); Tel.: 895-9701; Fax 895-7328; E-mail: publishing@stpauls.ph; Website: http://www.stpauls.ph.