When Jesus saw the vast crowd, his heart was
moved with pity for them, for they were like
sheep without a shepherd; and he began to teach
them many things. By now it was already late and
his disciples approached him and said, "This is a
deserted place and it is already very late. Dismiss
them so that they can go to the surrounding farms
and villages and buy themselves something to eat." He
said to them in reply, "Give them some food
yourselves." But they said to him, "Are we to buy
two hundred days´ wages worth of food and give
it to them to eat?" He asked them, "How
many loaves do you have? Go and see." And when
they had found out they said, "Five loaves and
two fish." So he gave orders to have them sit
down in groups on the green grass. The people
took their places in rows by hundreds and by
fifties. Then, taking the five loaves and the two fish
and looking up to heaven, he said the blessing,
broke the loaves, and gave them to his disciples
to set before the people; he also divided the two
fish among them all. They all ate and were
satisfied. And they picked up 12 wicker baskets full
of fragments and what was left of the fish. Those
who ate of the loaves were five thousand men.
Introductory Prayer: Lord I am nothing without you in
my mission. I believe that there is no difficulty
in deepening my union with you that cannot be overcome.
I want to know and see with greater clarity
that your hand moves mine. You make possible what would
otherwise be impossible.
Petition:Lord, increase my confidence
and dependence on you.
1. “His Heart Was Moved with
Pity for Them, for They Were like Sheep Without a
Shepherd.” A heart that loves expands to meet the needs
of those it loves. None could love as perfectly
as Christ. Will I let Christ move me in
this prayer to see what he sees, suffer what he
suffers, and love what he loves? Who will teach
the vast numbers of those who are lost, especially
the young? Who will console the sorrowing who fight the
pervasive darkness of despair, and guide with fidelity the
hungry souls ready for the fullness of God’s truth?
Who can make present the power of the Shepherd to
heal and stay the force of evil in so
many dark corners of the world? If I open my
heart to see what Christ sees, I will follow
everyday what he asks of me to remedy a
broken world that needs salvation.
2. Give Them Some Food
Yourselves: Our Lord insists that we be active protagonists in
tackling the most difficult problems in the world. Many
only sigh at the world’s miseries as if to
say, “Lord, you have a problem. I will pray for
them.” Christ looks back and says to us, “This
is your mission now. I put it in your hands.”
Will we panic? Will we wonder where we will
get the time, the resources, the wisdom? Will we imagine
ourselves making it all happen? Our Lord asks us
to take responsibility, but he does not want us
taking control. There is a difference: One is the steward
in the mission—us; the other the owner—God. Taking responsibility
means making the needs of souls and the Church
our own. Not taking control means we never lose
sight of the one who controls the plan. I want
to do it his way, and not mine.
Many Loaves Do You Have? When Christ chooses us
for a mission, he does not select us because
he thinks we have what it takes, but rather
because he knows he will give us all that we
need. Sometimes we are faced with goals that are
real, yet beyond our power to accomplish. Anxiety––thinking we
need to be superhuman before a superhuman endeavor––inserts all sorts
of complexes into the human spirit: shutting down, feeling
overwhelmed, uncontrolled anger, unjustly limiting our field of action.
What does Christ ask when we face the impossible?
Just give what we have––give it all and don’t hold
back. Put all our loaves and fishes on the
table, and then Christ will work. Believe in the
power of our poor nothingness united to Christ.
with Christ:Lord, I believe in the power of my
nothingness united to your power and grace. Today I
accept the challenge of the mission before me, but only
if I take each step depending on you. With
you every burden is sweet, and every impossible task is
a new encounter with the power of your hand.
Resolution:I will stop sometime in the middle
of the day to spiritually place what I am doing
into Christ’s hands.