After reading through Today’s Readings, I have many thoughts going through my head.
First and foremost, I remember a priest giving a homily after reading this Gospel. He instructed everyone that this story was merely symbolic and that the miracle was not Jesus blessing the 5 loaves and the 2 fish and feeding 5 thousand, but the miracle was that those who had come to see Jesus with food shared with those who had come and didn’t plan ahead and bring food for themselves. Growing up we were always taught to offer proper respect to the priests we knew, so with all do respect to this priest – that’s complete hogwash. Christ performed that miracle for the 5 thousand people. As a matter of fact, that miracle is still being performed to this day. I was taught – and still believe this today – that the whole meaning of this miracle is to share with God the gifts He has given to us. Those gifts we give will be multiplied – miraculously through God – so that not only I will be satisfied, but my neighbor also. That is not only the point of the Gospel – it is also the meaning behind our first reading too…Beloved, let us love one another, because love is of God; everyone who loves is begotten by God and knows God.
Second, that miracle is still alive today and you too can participate in it. Holy Mother Church asks that we tithe, meaning we give back to God of our time, our talent and our treasure. To pull from one of the hymns we’ve used over the many years at Church…
All that we have and all that we offer
Comes from a heart both frightened and free.
Take what we bring now and give what we need.
All done in his name.
Just like the loaves and fishes that Jesus fed the 5 thousand with, we too can offer to God all that He has blessed us with by volunteering for numerous causes, visiting those who are home bound, in the hospital, in prison. We can offer money that can be used to help those who are in need. We can provide food for the poor by giving to St. Vincent DePaul; donating clothes to the Salvation Army. I would challenge you to not just give from your surplus, but trust in God and give more than that. That gift you give, not matter how simple, will be taken by God and multiplied to bless not only others, but God will bless you in return.
My last thought brings me back to my dad, Jack Dorhauer. Today’s meal in the Gospel was a very simple meal – bread and fish – but that simple meal was very satisfying. My dad loved the most simple meals in life. He would always compliment my mom when the dinner we had was either magnificent or very simple – roast beef and mashed potatoes on Sunday (magnificent), mushroom meat and noodles, pot pies (magnificent), hot dogs and chips, burgers and fries or leftovers on Saturday evening – it didn’t matter – my dad loved them all. To show how much he loved the simple, he washed all of that down with a Mississippi Highball, or more commonly referred to as ice water. We sat together as a family for most every meal in our house. We talked, we laughed, we blessed the food put before us and from this we grew in love as a family – a love that I might add we still share with each other to this day. Simple is good. Sharing that simplicity with others is even better – dare I say miraculous.
Do something great for our Lord today – all that you have, offer back to God. Do this in the name of God and sit back and watch the miracle take place all around you.
God’s will, not mine, be done.
Be not afraid; just have faith.
Jesus, I trust in You.
He must increase; I must decrease.
But you man of God chose righteousness, devotion, faith, love, patience and gentleness. Compete well for the faith.