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Homily For Ordinary 18 - Year A
Friar Sydney Mascarenhas. O.F.M., Ph.D


     The following Homily is provided by Friar Sidney as a way
     of enriching the ministry of the Word as presented through
     this web site.  Friar Sidney, who has spent much of his
     ministry in India, is currently a Professor of Philosophy
     in Rome.  He can be reached at smascarenhas@ofm.org.  The texts
     used by Friar Sydney come from the Roman Lectionary - which in
     most points agrees with the Revised Common Lectionary.

    
READINGS:
Isaiah 55:1-3.  Romans 8:35.37-39.  Matthew 14:31-21.


INTRODUCTION:
Let us meditate today on God's love and Compassion for all of us.
Let us pray that we also be as compassionate with one another
especially in our pain and sorrows.


HOMILY:
The readings today speak of food and drink: corn, bread and fish,
water, wine and milk! These are the basics for human sustenance.

The readings today speak of thirst, hunger, troubles, worries,
persecutions and sickness. These are the basic experiences of
humans.

The speaker is none other than the Triune God: Father, Son and
Holy Spirit.

In other words, the Triune God knows our needs and fears.  He
invites all. He is concerned about all of us.  He is concerned
about our basic needs.  He is concerned about our basic fears.
What else do we need?  What else do we wish?

Moses had led God's People through the desert three months before
they arrived at Mount Sinai.  There they stopped their journey.
It was a desert place, dry and scorching hot.  Moses went up to
Mount Sinai.  The people were forbidden to touch the edge of that
Mountain.  After two days, they heard peals of thunder and saw
flashes of lightning.  Mount Sinai was wrapped in smoke.  Mount
Sinai looked like a furnace.  It shook violently.  Yahweh himself
carved His Word on stone. He carved it on stone because the
hearts of men wavered.  He wanted to show His People that His
Word remains forever.

How awesome was that event!  It impressed all.  But we also know
that desert stone wears off with the heat of the sun and the cold
of the winter.  And so His Word written on stone also got ravaged
in the heat and the struggle of human lives.

How different is today's Gospel!

People follow Jesus.  Their hearts are filled with sorrow.  Their
minds are confused.  Their stomachs are hungry.

His disciples are not bothered.  They are quite sure that they
can do nothing for these people. 

It is He who feels for them and says: "Bring them here to me". 
It is He who orders them to sit down on the grass.  It is He who
looks up to Heaven and says a blessing over whatever is
available.  It is He who shares whatever is at their disposal. 
It is He who breaks and gives what is available to one and all. 

God is like the Shepherd and as Psalm 22 reads:  In grassy
meadows He lets me lie. 

Christians, do we see the great miracle!

God Himself takes His place amidst our miseries.  God Himself
blesses our situations.  God Himself shares our needs and
sorrowful experiences.  God wants us to do likewise with one
another.

In our miseries, let us look up to our Father in Heaven.  If we
have His eyes, His mind and His heart, we will see everything
that comes our way as a blessing.  Even our miseries and sorrows
will turn into joy! 

Let us share what we have as Jesus taught us.  If we do so, we
will reap more than we ever had.  Shalom!   

   
copyright - Friar Sydney Mascarenhas and  Rev. Richard J. Fairchild 1999 - 2005
            please acknowledge the appropriate author if citing these sermons.


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