Jesus teaches the crowds that he is the “Bread of Life” that came down from Heaven. Whoever eats this bread will never hunger again. May we draw near to the one who feeds us so that strengthened by the Lord we can share His life with one another.
“I am the Bread of Life” are the words the Lord speaks to the crowd. This time of year, when 1st Communions are common, may we receive the Lord in the Eucharist with the living bread that feeds our souls.
Family dinners – be they big or small – touch our hearts in a number of ways:
Nourish our bodies with wholesome, plentiful food
Unite us together, setting aside our differences for a moment of peace
Empower our lives, for service in the world
The same is true when we come to the Lord’s table at every Mass. We are nourished with Christ’s Body & Blood. We are united as the People of God – as brothers and sisters, neighbors and friends. We are empowered to go forth, touching the hearts of those we meet with the grace and peace of Jesus Christ.
May our reception of Holy Communion feed our souls, foster unity, and empower us to live our lives for the Lord!
Growing up in a large Italian-American family, big dinners were a common occurrence. The usual suspects like Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving were typical; but family gatherings (with all the adults talking and the kids talking louder) provided numerous opportunities for people to gather and make the simple task of taking nourishment a beautiful experience for body, mind, heart, and soul.
Tables were set, special foods chosen, delicacies prepared in advance…all these steps to make the dinner something special, something extraordinary.
They were feasts.
Indeed, whenever we take the time and effort to make dining an experience, we create opportunities that touch us on multiple levels. Good food is augmented by delightful conversation, enlivened with beauty, and woven together with human hopes and dreams. A feast is not just an abundance of food; it is a rich expression of God’s goodness working through others to nourish our lives in profound ways.
All of the readings point to different ways the Lord sustains our lives:
Wisdom sets a rich table, calling us to abandon foolishness to follow her
We “taste and see the goodness of the Lord” in the psalm response
Ephesians invites us to be filled with the Spirit, living upright lives
Jesus commands us to eat his flesh and drink his blood, that we might have eternal life
Every Mass provides us with the opportunity to draw near the altar and be renewed through our reception of Holy Communion. Christ sets the table for us, inviting us to turn away from destructive and harmful forces, so that we might receive the grace we need to continue on the journey of life.