14 When he disembarked and saw the vast crowd, his heart was moved with pity for them, and he cured their sick. 15 When it was evening, the disciples approached him and said, "This is a deserted place and it is already late; dismiss the crowds so that they can go to the villages and buy food for themselves." 16 (Jesus) said to them, "There is no need for them to go away; give them some food yourselves." 17 But they said to him, "Five loaves and two fish are all we have here." 18 Then he said, "Bring them here to me," 19 and he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, he said the blessing, broke the loaves, and gave them to the disciples, who in turn gave them to the crowds. 20 They all ate and were satisfied, and they picked up the fragments left over --twelve wicker baskets full. 21 Those who ate were about five thousand men, not counting women and children.
“Taking up the five loaves and two fish, and looking up to heaven, he said the blessing, and gave them to his disciples.” ~ v. 19
The gospel today tells us how compassionate Jesus was. Faced by a multitude of hungry people, he did not send them home, as his disciples suggested, because he did not want them to faint along the way. Jesus made a miracle instead, multiplying the five loaves of bread and two fish to feed the multitude.
We cannot make miracles like Jesus. Still, we have the obligation to feed the hungry. Poverty in the Philippines has reached a critical stage. At least 30% of Filipinos live below the poverty line.
Millions of Filipinos are hungry and millions more are dying because of poverty. They do not have the money to buy nutritious food, nor to pay doctors and buy medicines when they get sick. They do not even have the money to bury their loved ones when they die.
The commandment to love our neighbor calls us to do something for the poor. The best way to do this is to empower them.
Credits: Fr. Pedro Salgado, OP; Homilies for all Sundays, excerpts; slightly adapted
Source: The Reflection is from Bro. Abel Navarro (you can visit his blog at http://myblogabelnavarro-abel.blogspot.com/).