We Are Fed… and There Are Plenty of Leftovers!

They all ate and were satisfied.

And when the leftover fragments were picked up,
they filled twelve wicker baskets.

These are the concluding words of the Gospel reading this weekend from Luke on the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, when we hear about Jesus feeding thousands of his followers by praying over five loaves of bread and two fish that the apostles then distribute, only to find enough leftover scraps to fill 12 wicker baskets.

The Feast of Corpus Christi (Body of Christ) is liturgically celebrated this Sunday as well. It is appropriate that on this day, we take time to fully remember and recognize that Jesus is truly present to us – body, blood, soul and divinity – in the Eucharist.

It’s an incredible feeling to know that we are fully fed every time we come to the table of the Lord and receive Him in the Eucharist! We bring all of our cares, worries, concerns, needs and petitions to Jesus each time we approach the altar at Mass. We come to our Lord looking to be fed and we never leave hungry! There is nowhere else we can go to be fed the way Jesus feeds us.

But as I reflected on the Gospel reading and particularly the last few lines above, I thought about my family and particularly my children. It’s an awesome responsibility as a parent to care for children. They have physical needs that have to be met, including being fed (there’s definitely a price tag that goes along with that — I try not to look at my grocery bills with five children). But while they need to be fed to provide nourishment to their bodies, they also need to be fed spiritually to strengthen their spirit. We feed our children body and spirit to they can go out in the world and spread the Gospel and glorify God by their lives.

Knowing that there were 12 wicker baskets left over after Jesus fed the multitudes provides great comfort. The message for us is this: Jesus will provide abundance beyond our needs and even our wildest dreams if we just follow and trust in Him!

Peace to you!

(CNS photo/Kerry Myers, Catholic Weekly)

Catholic Review

The Catholic Review is the official publication of the Archdiocese of Baltimore.