Saturday, August 2, 2014

08-03-2014 -- Eighteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A

August 03, 2014 - Eighteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A
Saint Martin de Tours Catholic Church

Last weekend, the readings posed a question: If you could ask for one thing from the Lord, for what would you ask?

It is a thought-provoking question. I hope you pondered it this past week. I know I certainly did.

Hopefully, your answer was, in some way, connected with satisfying some of your deepest needs, some of the deepest desires of your heart.

That’s why the crowds flocked to see Jesus. They were longing for 
healing and wholeness. They wanted to have him touch their sick loved ones, to heal them and change their lives.

They were so affected by his words and his care for them that they forgot themselves and the day got away from them.

Now they are hungry, physically hungry, without enough provisions. Jesus loves them so much that he is concerned about meeting all their needs.

He distributes a few loaves of bread and miraculously feeds thousands. There are enough scraps left over to fill a dozen baskets. This is proof that God is concerned for those who are hungry.

In the first reading, the Prophet Isaiah shares with us the image of a rich banquet with plenty of food and drink. Come eat, come drink, come delight in the banquet God has prepared.

Today we are seldom physically hungry. Most of us have more than enough to eat.

As a matter of fact, we must resist the urge to be gluttons. We must resist the urge to be wasteful while much of the world’s population is hungry.

Now, we may not be physically hungry, but many are spiritually malnourished. It seems that we, as individuals and as a society, are experiencing a spiritual famine.

Something's not quite right in our relationship with the Lord. There is a spiritual and emotional longing, an aching of spirit, an overwhelming desire to feel loved unconditionally.

Into this overwhelming desire steps St. Paul. And he reminds us that nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord, not life, not death, not distress, not persecution, not famine, not the sword.

We are always invited to the Lord's banquet, but we sometimes forget about the Lord and prefer our own earthly banquets.

We feast on the riches of this world and the food might fill us for a time, but it does not satisfy our hunger. It leaves us wanting more.

And our earthly banquets can get downright messy. Family fights can break out, someone's going to drink too much, feelings are going to get hurt, food's getting burned.

Things don't always go the way we planned, but not at the heavenly banquet. With God as our host, our desires and longings are finally satisfied.

What we do here each Sunday is a foretaste of that heavenly banquet. God sets before us food from heaven, food that satisfies our deepest needs, food that is proof of Jesus’ overwhelming love.

The heavenly food which the Lord provides at this banquet feeds us well and renews God’s life with us.

The bread of life, Jesus’ sacred body, is food that assures us that no power, nor any adversity, nor divorce, nor a loved one who is in drug rehab, nor waiting for a medical diagnosis, nor things present, nor things to come, absolutely nothing, not even death itself can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.


  1. "Food from heaven that satisfies our deepest needs". So very true. I will remember this each time I go to communion. Thanks for reminding us.

  2. My deepest heart's desire is that nothing and no one, not even for a moment, have the power to separate me from God's lavish and unwavering love.