“What good are these for so many?”

July 26, 2015 – Seventeenth Sunday in ordinary time

2 Kings 4:42-44; Ephesians 4:1-6; John 6:1-15
José Mario O Mandía

The miracle of the loaves is the “rehearsal” for what will happen in the Last Supper. There, Jesus institutes the Sacrifice of the New Covenant, the Mass. He also institutes the new priesthood that will serve at the Altar of Sacrifice.

In the Holy Sacrifice, Jesus is both Offerer and Offered, both Priest and Victim. But when we come to Mass, he also asks each one of us for our loaves and fishes, because we are also other Christs. He also asks us, “What loaves or fishes do you have to offer with me?”

What we give Him is humanly insignificant, the loaves and fishes of our daily life – our work, our rest, our family life, our joys, our sorrows, successes, failures, sacrifices. “What good are these for so many?” But once Jesus takes them up in His hands, He multiplies the value of our offering. From a few loaves, Jesus produced twelve baskets. From our little contribution, God draws grace to nourish the souls of many people.

“Receive, O Lord, all my liberty.

Take my memory, my understanding, and my entire will.

Whatsoever I have or hold, You have given me;

I give it all back to You and surrender it

wholly to be governed by your will.

Give me only your love and your grace,

with these I will be rich enough,

and ask for nothing more.” (St Ignatius)

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