“They left rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name.”
A reading from the Acts of the Apostles (Acts 5:34-42)
In those days: A Pharisee in the council named Gamaliel, a teacher of the law, held in honour by all the people, stood up and ordered the apostles to be put outside for a while. And he said to them, “Men of Israel, take care what you do with these men. For before these days Theudas arose, claiming to be somebody, and a number of men, about four hundred, joined him; but he was slain and all who followed him were dispersed and came to nothing. After him Judas the Galilean arose in the days of the census and drew away some of the people after him; he also perished, and all who followed him were scattered. So in the present case I tell you, keep away from these men and let them alone; for if this plan or this undertaking is of men, it will fail; but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them. You might even be found opposing God!” So they took his advice, and when they had called in the apostles, they beat them and charged them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. Then they left the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonour for the name. And every day in the temple and at home they did not cease teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ.
The word of the Lord.
RESPONSORIAL PSALM Psalm 27:1.4. 13- 14 (4ac)
R/. There is one thing I ask of the Lord, to live in the house of the Lord.
The Lord is my light and my salvation;
whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life;
whom should I dread? R/.
There is one thing I ask of the Lord,
only this do I seek:
to live in the house of the Lord
all the days of my life,
to gaze on the beauty of the Lord,
to inquire at his temple. R/.
I believe I shall see the Lord’s goodness
in the land of the living.
Wait for the Lord; be strong;
be stouthearted, and wait for the Lord! R/.
ALLELUIA Matthew 4:4b
Alleluia. Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God. Alleluia.
He distributed to those who were seated as much as they wanted.
A reading from the holy Gospel according to John (John 6: 1- 15)
At that time: Jesus went to the other side of the Sea of Galilee, which is the Sea of Tiberias. And a multitude followed him, because they saw the signs which he did on those who were diseased. Jesus went up into the hills, and there sat down with his disciples. Now the Passover, the feast of the Jews, was at hand. Lifting up his eyes, then, and seeing that a multitude was coming to him, Jesus said to Philip, “How are we to buy bread, so that these people may eat?” This he said to test him, for he himself knew what he would do. Philip answered him, “Two hundred denarii would not buy enough bread for each of them to get a little.” One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, said to him, “There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two fish; but what are they among so many?” Jesus said, “Make the people sit down.” Now there was much grass in the place; so the men sat down, in number about five thousand. Jesus then took the loaves, and when he had given thanks, he distributed them to those who were seated; so also the fish, as much as they wanted. And when they had eaten their fill, he told his disciples, “Gather up the fragments left over, that nothing may be lost.” So they gathered them up and filled twelve baskets with fragments from the five barley loaves, left by those who had eaten. When the people saw the sign which he had done, they said, “This is indeed the prophet who is to come into the world!” Perceiving then that they were about to come and take him by force to make him king, Jesus withdrew again to the hills by himself.
The Gospel of the Lord.
The multiplication of bread and fish is a preparation for the gift which God gives in Christ at the Eucharistic banquet. The Paschal feast is near; the atmosphere is one of expectation, wonder and peace. The people had come a long way to listen to Jesus; they needed rest and food. All the suffering, pain and anguish of our life’s journey seem to disappear in the serene presence and peace of Christ. He knows what he is going to do. He takes bread and fish, offers them to the Father and gives thanks. Thus nature is brought back to the Creator; human work is referred to God who grants him to do it. Our efforts and our fatigue are offered to the love of God who grants him to do it. Our efforts and our fatigue are offered to the love of God. Our little offering is multiplied and returned to us; our fatigue is lightened. The bread Jesus offers is a sign and guarantee of eternity.