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SATURDAY OF THE FIRST WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME FEBRUARY 13, 2021



Gospel

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?” They replied, “Seven.” 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 the crowd and got into the boat with his disciples and came to the region of Dalmanutha.


REFLECTION:


“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.”

My sister knew a college-aged man who never seemed to fill up after eating a meal. This tall, thin man must have had a very high metabolism, since he ate constantly throughout the day. One day she brought him and his roommates to eat a home-cooked meal at my mother’s house. Never having met my mom, they didn’t believe my mother could fill him up at her table. They were wrong. She had more than enough for the group, including the bottomless pit he had for a stomach. His stomach had met its match at my mother’s dinner table.


Like a good parent meeting the needs of his children, God took care of his faithful flock in the Gospel. He sent his Son, not only to feed the hungry, but to reveal a precursor for how Jesus would feed us. God knew what we would truly hunger for in this world. Jesus’ manner in blessing and breaking the bread for multiplication was deliberate and prepared us for the present-day miracle at every mass.


Today, his disciples continue to help feed thousands through the breaking of the bread on His sacred altar. The priest’s words of consecration, given to us by Jesus, bring us the body and blood of Jesus. God is not frugal when he provides the bread of life to those who come forward out of a love for Him. Let us partake in the great sacrifice and know this abundant food will satisfy us until we reach our eternal life.

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