“I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst.” John 6:35
Easier to grumble than let God be God, right? Easier but not very satisfying to our souls.
In today’s reading from Exodus, we hear the complaints of the Israelites who just a few days out of Egypt and slavery accuse Moses of leading them into a desert only to die of famine. That’s when the Lord tells Moses that he will rain down bread from heaven “so that you may know that I, the Lord, am your God.”
We all need to hear those words from time to time. Focusing on the Bread of Life doesn’t take away the shortcomings and setbacks that inevitably come our way. But it does center us on the gift of God’s unwavering presence in our lives—through the Eucharist and through our love for one another, especially those who need us most.
At the same time, God is asking us to become the Bread of Life for one another… to share each other’s burdens and to celebrate each other’s joys. The goal is to become the person God created us to be: cheerful in our faith, compassionate toward those in need, and dedicated to building God’s kingdom on earth. That is our mission calling.
And today is a perfect moment to respond: by practicing the corporal works of mercy, making time for prayer, removing hurts, extending forgiveness… and letting God be God.
The manna from heaven in today’s reading is fulfilled in the Eucharist, the food that, as John says, does not perish but endures for all eternity. A good message for our souls to dwell on this day.
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Father Raymond J. Finch, M.M.
Prayer for 1st Sunday
Nourish us, O Bread of Life,
with the very Body of Christ
that the love of Christ might fill
our hearts, minds, and lives to overflowing.
Strengthen us, O Food of Angels,
with the living Bread of heaven
that we might live no longer for ourselves
but for all those for whom Christ died.
Empower us, O Blessed Sacrament
in which the body, blood, soul, and divinity Of Christ
remain with us to fulfill the command of Christ
to love and forgive.
Sanctify us, O Bread blest, broken and shared
that You may help us help others to walk the way of holiness
that leads everyone to Your kingdom
Where You live and reign
with the Father and Holy Spirit
God forever and ever.
Prayer by, Father Joseph Veneroso M.M.