FED BY HIS HANDS: A HOMILY ON SATURDAY, 5TH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME, YEAR II
Food is very important for our survival and the importance of food in our lives cannot be overemphasized. But at the same time, we can decide to feed like children or feed like adults. For children, food must come from their parent. Adam and Eve had a parent-children relationship with God, but they decided to go against that. They decided that it was not a good idea for God to dictate what they should eat and what they should not eat. So they took the laws into their own hands and decided for themselves what to eat and what not to eat. The consequence of this is that they were driven out of the garden.
But because He is a merciful God, He sent His only begotten Son to restore us back to that original relationship. In the gospel, we have a crowd returning back to the desert to meet Jesus and to be fed by Him. For three days they had nothing to eat, but Jesus multiplied seven loaves in a format that is very Eucharistic. He took the bread, gave thanks, broke them and gave them to the disciples to distribute to the crowd. He also multiplied the fish and the people ate and seven basketful of scraps left over was collected. The Eucharist becomes the food that we are permitted to eat. In Genesis was food that we were forbidden from eating. Now, instead of saying ‘Do not eat this fruit’, He says ‘Do this in memory of me’. Each time we receive the Eucharist, we are not just being fed by God. We are being fed by the very hands of God.