Reflection on the Daily Readings for 7/26/09 by Fr. Bertrand Buby, SM

Today’s Readings

Scripture for Sunday, 16th B in Ordinary time. II Kings 4:42-44. Psalm
145:10-11,15-16,17-18. Ephesians 4:1-6. John 6:1-15. Lectionary # 111:

Saint Thomas Aquinas says that the Sacrament of the Eucharist has as its
effects the unity and peace of the participants as well as of the Church
and the world. We see this emphasized also in the selection from Ephesians
which speaks of unity which leads to peace. Paul encourages us, to "make
every effort to preserve the unit and peace...there is but one body and one

This Sunday is filled with the theme of the Eucharist not only in the
Gospel but in the first reading and the Psalm response as well as what we
have seen as the effects of the Eucharist through the thought of Paul. In
our reading from II Kings we see Elisha, the prophet and miracle worker who
succeeds Elijah, multiplying the barley loaves in order to feed about one
hundred men. This prefigures what Jesus is doing during the approaching
time of Passover on the hillsides of Galilee where he is preaching. His
apostles become agents of what is about to happen as they gather the few
pieces of bread and the two fish that a boy has. Jesus then uses words
that are familiar to us both from the Passover and from the Eucharistic
Prayers: He takes the loaves of bread and gives thanks to God, he blesses
and multiplies them and gives the bread to be distributed to the five
thousand who have gathered. They are filled with them. Jesus then tells his
apostles to "gather up the crusts that are left over so that nothing goes
to waste."

In both events the common good of the people is served by Elisha and Jesus.
Both performed a miracle and thus made the people to be unified and at
peace. They were fed, so to speak, with bread from heaven. St. Thomas
rightly understood the meaning of these actions when he spoke of them
bringing about unity and peace. May we participate in these events
recalled and reenacted in the Eucharist ang help bring about peace and
unity in the family to which we belong and to others who are our friends
and neighbors. Amen.