Reflection for 18th Sunday of Ordinary Time
First Reading: Isaiah 55:1-3
Second Reading: Romans 8:35, 37-39
Gospel: Matthew 14:13-21
The multiplication of the loaves and fish is the only miracle that is found in all four gospels. This miracle is a foreshadowing of Jesus’s great gift to us of the institution of the Holy Eucharist. The Eucharist foreshadows the heavenly banquet. As Catholics, we know that at Mass, we find “heaven on earth”. The enticements and allurements of the world will suggest that heaven on earth is something or somewhere else. How many times have we heard a commercial on TV tell us about what heaven on earth is, maybe a beautiful vacation destination or something else. But we know otherwise. Jesus nourishes us in the Eucharist. He satisfies are spiritual “hunger”.
Brothers and sisters: What will separate us from the love of Christ? Will anguish, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril or the sword? (and we could add to this list – pandemic) No, in all these things we conquer overwhelmingly through him who loved us. In the Eucharist, we experience the infinite love of Jesus Christ first hand. The love of Christ transforms us. We can not be the same. In Jesus we find peace through all the circumstances that St. Paul describes.
In the storms of life, we will turn to others for help. But, it is Jesus Christ who gives to us Himself in the Eucharist to strengthen us throughout our life’s journey. We must put our lives in the hands of Jesus. It’s not always easy to do so. We must give Jesus our five loaves and two fish. St. John Paul II wrote: “Place your lives in the hands of Jesus. He will accept you and bless you beyond your greatest expectations.” Let’s not hold back. Let’s renew our commitment to Jesus Christ and give ourselves completely to Him!
May God bless us all always!