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AUGUST 1. Ord Time B. Wk 18. Sun. Jn. 6. 24-35

Updated: Sep 10

When the people saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they got into boats and crossed to Capernaum to look for Jesus. When they found him on the other side, they said to him, ‘Rabbi, when did you come here?’ Jesus answered:

‘I tell you most solemnly,

you are not looking for me because you have seen the signs

but because you had all the bread you wanted to eat.

Do not work for food that cannot last,

but work for food that endures to eternal life,

the kind of food the Son of Man is offering you,

for on him the Father, God himself, has set his seal.’


Then they said to him, ‘What must we do if we are to do the works that God wants?’ Jesus gave them this answer, ‘This is working for God: you must believe in the one he has sent.’


So, they said, ‘What sign will you give to show us that we should believe in you? What work will you do? Our fathers had manna to eat in the desert; as scripture says: He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’ Jesus answered:

‘I tell you most solemnly,

it was not Moses who gave you bread from heaven,

it is my Father who gives you the bread from heaven,

the true bread;

for the bread of God

is that which comes down from heaven

and gives life to the world.’


‘Sir,’ they said ‘give us that bread always.’ Jesus answered:

‘I am the bread of life.

He who comes to me will never be hungry;

he who believes in me will never thirst.’


Without doubt, the centrepiece of today’s Gospel is a teaching from Jesus on the necessity of Faith, and in particular the need to believe in this new teaching; - that he intends to make his body and blood available to his people; - under the form of bread and wine.


There is no question this would have been a “hard saying” and many did walk away seeing such a proposal as impossible; - but then what a remarkable gift Christ was providing to those of his people who were prepared to believe?


We have been given the privilege of being able to receive Christ within our body on a regular basis; - in order to worship him; - to reveal our needs; - and to receive sanctifying grace in the form of food for the pilgrimage of life!


Jesus also gave an interesting response in this Gospel when asked “‘What must we do if we are to do the works God wants,” with his response being; - This is working for God; ­- You must believe in the one he has sent”; - which places the primary focus on having Faith!


The implication flowing from this lesson is that the treasures of the Holy Eucharist will only be available to those who have faith in this teaching; - on the Sacrament of God’s Love!


Gospel Acclamation Matthew 4:4


Alleluia, alleluia!

No one lives on bread alone,

but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.

Alleluia!


FIRST READING: Exodus 16:2-4,12-15 · The Lord sends manna from heaven


The whole community of the sons of Israel began to complain against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness and said to them, ‘Why did we not die at the Lord’s hand in the land of Egypt, when we were able to sit down to pans of meat and could eat bread to our heart’s content! As it is, you have brought us to this wilderness to starve this whole company to death!’


Then the Lord said to Moses, ‘Now I will rain down bread for you from the heavens. Each day the people are to go out and gather the day’s portion; I propose to test them in this way to see whether they will follow my law or not.


‘I have heard the complaints of the sons of Israel. Say this to them, “Between the two evenings you shall eat meat, and in the morning you shall have bread to your heart’s content. Then you will learn that I, the Lord, am your God.”’


And so it came about: quails flew up in the evening, and they covered the camp; in the morning there was a coating of dew all round the camp. When the coating of dew lifted, there on the surface of the desert was a thing delicate, powdery, as fine as hoarfrost on the ground. When they saw this, the sons of Israel said to one another, ‘What is that?’ not knowing what it was. ‘That’ said Moses to them ‘is the bread the Lord gives you to eat.’


"The whole Israelite community grumbled against Moses and Aaron!" - What were they grumbling about? The answer to that is simple. They were grumbling because their circumstances were not as they liked; - were not as they wanted!


Lord, do we not continue to grumble even today, and for exactly the same reasons? We want our lives to be "how we want them," whereas what you want from us is that we should trust in your ways, in your plans, in your wisdom, and in your Love!


The message you gave us through St Faustina was that we should trust in you; - and in your merciful love; - but sadly, what we do instead is to trust in our own wisdom, our own ability, and our own love; - the evidence of which you have given us in your Passion and Death; - in your Church; - in Mary our Mother; - and in the Holy Eucharist which you revealed to us in today's Gospel.


Rather than grumble, we should be falling on our knees in adoration and thanksgiving; - but sadly, we continue to grumble!


In the Old Testament your people had Abraham and Moses to intercede for them; - to their great advantage; - but today we have your Son Jesus Christ, who is sitting at your right hand in heaven; - along with Mary our Mother; - who both intercede for us; - and how much better than the Prophets of old?


Jesus I trust, not in my own wisdom or ability, but rather in you and our mother! Help me to stop grumbling and instead to have faith in your love and mercy; - as I journey through this arid land; - aided by Prayer, our blessed mother, and your Bread from Heaven!


RESPONSORIAL PSALM. Psalm 77(78):3-4,23-25,54


The Lord gave them bread from heaven.


The things we have heard and understood,

the things our fathers have told us,

these we will not hide from their children

but will tell them to the next generation:


The Lord gave them bread from heaven.


the glories of the Lord and his might

and the marvellous deeds he has done,

Yet he commanded the clouds above

and opened the gates of heaven.

He rained down manna for their food,

and gave them bread from heaven.


The Lord gave them bread from heaven.


Mere men ate the bread of angels.

He sent them abundance of food;

So he brought them to his holy land,

to the mountain which his right hand had won.


The Lord gave them bread from heaven.


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