Year A - Sunday 31.07.2011
Fr. Ottavio Raimondo – Sister Giuseppina Barbato

Come and eat (1st reading: Is 55.1 -3)
None can separate us from the love of God (II reading: Rm 8, 35.37-39)
All ate a satiety and advanced 12 baskets (3rd reading: Mt 14.13 -21)

 Matthew’ Gospel

' Saw a great crowd and felt compassion for them '. The Evangelist first presents this lively run people around Jesus, sign of the effectiveness of the word and the works carried out by him. The enthusiasm, that Jesus was arousing, could very well give bait to note political aspirations of compatriots. The narrative shows  the formation of a messianic movement of nationalistic type around  Jesus, but he reacts dramatically, as written in the other Gospels, especially the text of John (6.15). However Jesus try compassion for all those people, ' they hunger and they were like sheep without a shepherd.

The interpretation of ' the  section of bread ' is this, ' mercy, ' the hesed’ of God which bends on human creature like a father, because each thing, each event of the history and daily life is embraced by God. The story of Matthew emphasizes this love that is not understood, because it is not conceivable as a poor bread can carry such a weight of love: this is the masterpiece of Evangelical mentality that clearly opposes the worldly mindset  that  wants  Christ as a triumphant Messiah, not like he really is, the servant of Yahweh.

The community of the Gospel of Matthew

Jesus flees into the wilderness, into hiding. In our Gospel we use 10 times the word "withdraw" and always during the persecutions. The first time we used it when Jesus was just born and in order to subtract the child from persecution, Joseph and Mary retired fleeing into Egypt.

It is the same experience that have made many of us who have retreated from Jerusalem and Judea here on the Golan Heights. But it is also the experience of countless people fleeing forced to retreat from their lands. And in this  underground desert Jesus meets the crowd of outcasts which offers a new windfall. We are not talking about multiplication of the loaves but sharing. For us the miracle of Jesus consisted in the fact that someone who had little has agreed to make it available to all. Seeing this, others did the same and in sharing the little slot for everyone and even do advanced.

Christian communities today

The draft of the Kingdom of God is made of gratuitousness and sharing.  Everyone eats the bread distributed by Jesus  and  twelve baskets were fully left : a messianic sign of universality. Certainly the distribution of bread has a deep liturgical meaning, but the point is the union between liturgy and life. Each Eucharist should have this sense of sharing and announcement of a just and compassionate society. A family composed of father, mother and two children, attending every Sunday to Sunday Mass and leaving the Church did not give alms to the poor sitting near the door. Expecting  everyone to go, then, they  went to the poor and invited him to share the Sunday lunch. "For us – so expressed – Sunday isn't Sunday if we do not share our family life with some people marginalized, the poor".

And a young man a few days ago in response to an email expressed these feelings: "In the file that you sent me it is there a step I regarded  my own:-  the human relationships  are essential for life, as   the Humanities unveiled stressing that every human being is a being relational and can't live without human relationships. This is my point ... we  live in a dehumanized society, that makes scattered people.  This loneliness prompts me to think of solutions and to look for places where I can  feel more part of a community

"We dream of a church that distributes the bread to a increasingly marginalized and fragmented humankind .  The Eucharist  at every Sunday should be the time to be inserted in this horizon.

Tips: Start this Sunday not to leave the Church without having hailed a person who you do not  know.

Fr. Ottavio Raimondo – Sister Giuseppina Barbato