Our current lectionary cycle is B, in which Mark’s Gospel is frequently used as the Sunday Gospel. But Mark’s is a short Gospel. So for five weeks in year B, we switch to the Gospel of John and hear the “bread of life” passages from John, Chapter 6. Remember, John’s account of the last supper does not include Jesus breaking and blessing bread. But in his sixth chapter it is clear that the Eucharist was being celebrated when this Gospel was written, around 100-110 CE. Today the famous miracle of the multiplication of the loaves and fish is our Gospel reading. The awe factor of this miracle is how few loaves and fish there were to start, and how many leftovers there were at the end. Abundance. God’s love is abundant! Too often conflicts begin because we are worried that there won’t be enough to go around — enough jobs if immigrants take them; enough inheritance from parents; enough land to share in contested territory disputes; enough money to meet social needs and also national security. Fearing scarcity turns us into hoarders — of things, of information or knowledge, of people, of power. St. Ignatius of Loyola’s prayer “Suscipe” ends with this line: Give me only your love and your grace, that is enough for me. When I consider all the many things God has given me during my life, much more than the mere necessities, can I let go of concerns about the future and pray those lines with confidence, knowing that God will keep multiplying those loaves and fishes?
– Blog entry by Sister Mary Garascia