Loaves and Fish – Understanding the Reading through the Eyes of the Church

Matthew 14:14-22

14 And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick. 15 And when it was evening, his disciples came to him, saying, This is a desert place, and the time is now past; send the multitude away, that they may go into the villages, and buy themselves victuals. 16 But Jesus said unto them, They need not depart; give ye them to eat. 17 And they say unto him, We have here but five loaves, and two fishes. 18 He said, Bring them hither to me. 19 And he commanded the multitude to sit down on the grass, and took the five loaves, and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, he blessed, and brake, and gave the loaves to his disciples, and the disciples to the multitude. 20 And they did all eat, and were filled: and they took up of the fragments that remained twelve baskets full. 21 And they that had eaten were about five thousand men, beside women and children. 22 And straightway Jesus constrained his disciples to get into a ship, and to go before him unto the other side, while he sent the multitudes away.

The Gospel reading of the Five Loaves and Two Fish, also known as the Feeding of the 5000, is one of the most popular Gospel stories and frequently preached on.  The problem is, when you engage in self-interpretation, you can imagine so many lessons that might be intended here.  But was that the intent of the author of the Gospel?  In this homily, we will look at the historic understanding of this miracle, and why self-interpretation can lead us away from truth and the important questions raised by this account.

To see the rough draft of this homily, click "Read More" […]

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