By Sem. Rodel Aclan
“They have not understood the incident of the loaves.” This incident of the loaves is the feeding of the five thousand people. But what is the connection between the feeding of loaves for the five thousand people to the ordeal that the disciples experienced at the sea? They were tossed by the wind while at the middle of the sea, and they saw and mistook Jesus to a ghost because He was walking on the water. And when He finally boarded their boat, the wind died down and they were amazed.
This great miracle of feeding the five thousand of bread prefigures the bread that Jesus Himself will give to all the people. The bread that will fully satisfy the hunger of man. Whenever we eat this Bread, Jesus remains in us and us in Him. (1Jn.4:16). If Jesus is with us, there is nothing to be afraid of. Like the disciples whose fear vanished when He had joined them on the boat.
There is a saying that we become what we eat. In the celebration of the Holy Eucharist, we receive Jesus in the form of bread, but we know that what we receive is no ordinary bread but the Body of Christ. Hopefully we understand this great miracle of feeding on the very Body of our Lord Jesus. He gave us this sacrament so that He can always be present with us and in us.
If He is with us, who can be against us? If He is with us and in us we can triumph against every struggle that will come into our life. And most importantly, we will be eternally with Him together with the Father and the Holy Spirit.
THE GOSPEL TODAY
After the five thousand had eaten and were satisfied,
Jesus made his disciples get into the boat
and precede him to the other side toward Bethsaida,
while he dismissed the crowd.
And when he had taken leave of them,
he went off to the mountain to pray.
When it was evening,
the boat was far out on the sea and he was alone on shore.
Then he saw that they were tossed about while rowing,
for the wind was against them.
About the fourth watch of the night,
he came toward them walking on the sea.
He meant to pass by them.
But when they saw him walking on the sea,
they thought it was a ghost and cried out.
They had all seen him and were terrified.
But at once he spoke with them,
“Take courage, it is I, do not be afraid!”
He got into the boat with them and the wind died down.
They were completely astounded.
They had not understood the incident of the loaves.
On the contrary, their hearts were hardened.