Only in heaven will we see how much we owe to the poor for helping us to love God better because of them.
~ St. Teresa of Calcutta
In today’s gospel, Jesus instructed His apostles to feed the crowd that had assembled to hear Him talk. Philip answered him, “Two hundred days’ wages worth of food would not be enough for each of them to have a little.” Little did Philip know what Jesus had in mind.
Jesus instructed everyone to be seated and, after He had assembled five loaves and two fish, Jesus said a prayer blessing the food and ordered that it be distributed. Many scripture scholars would go on to say that no one back then ever traveled without food for themselves and that Jesus’ willingness to share all that He and His apostles had must have been enough to invite the others to open their own baskets and share with others.
That fulfilled one of the most important mandates: give food and water to the guest. The second mandate was very important as well: feed the hungry. With the fragments left over, they had twelve baskets to share with the needy.
God has already given generously to us: He gave His Son and His Son gave His life. Now, God asks us to open our own baskets and to give in return. We can “feed the hungry” in several ways:
- Volunteer at a local soup kitchen
- Donate to St. Vincent de Paul
- Become a mentor or a tutor
- Visit the sick
- Check in on an elderly neighbor
These are just a few suggestions to prime the pump. There are so many ways to care for the needs of others. In doing so, we are feeding them either physically or feeding their spirits. Either way, we are doing the work of the Lord.
FAITH ACTION: In one manner or another, “feed” someone who is hungry today.