A small boy has five loaves and two fish. Jesus blesses them and ensures that all in the crowd can eat. Volunteer Trevor Stockton reflects on what this gospel story (John 6:1-15) means for us in a world where so many people still go hungry.
Based on the gospel for Sunday 29 July – John 6:1-15
“Here is a small boy with five barley loaves and two fish; but what is that among so many?”
Jesus is followed by the crowd, who are impressed by his healing of the sick. It is getting dark and the crowds need to eat. The only food available is five loaves and two fish held by a small boy. Jesus ensures there is enough for all in the crowd to share.
Pope Francis regularly uses the miracle of the feeding of the five thousand in his homilies. He sees important lessons for us today in sharing what we have with those who have not.
In his Angelus homily at St Peter’s on 2 June 2013 Pope Francis said,
“Looking at those five loaves, Jesus thinks: this is Providence! From this small amount, God can make it suffice for everyone. Jesus trusts in the heavenly Father without reserve; he knows that for him everything is possible.
“Jesus tells his disciples to have the people sit down … takes those loaves and fish … recites the blessing … and gives them to the disciples who distribute them… and the loaves and fish do not run out, they do not run out! This is the miracle: rather than a multiplication it is a sharing, inspired by faith and prayer.”
The Gospel reminds us that even though every day around one billion people do not have enough to eat, through God’s grace there is enough food for everyone if we share it.
Lord, help us to see that only by sharing your abundant supply of food will no one be left hungry. Amen.