Sunday, August 3, 2014

‘Every noble work is at first impossible.’

I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, “move from here to there” and it will move. Nothing will be impossible to you. - Jesus Christ

Gospel Text: (MT 14:13-21)
When Jesus heard of the death of John the Baptist,
he withdrew in a boat to a deserted place by himself.
The crowds heard of this and followed him on foot from their towns.
When he disembarked and saw the vast crowd,
his heart was moved with pity for them, and he cured their sick.
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.”
Jesus said to them, “There is no need for them to go away;
give them some food yourselves.”
But they said to him,
“Five loaves and two fish are all we have here.”
Then he said, “Bring them here to me, ”
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.
They all ate and were satisfied,
and they picked up the fragments left over—
twelve wicker baskets full.
Those who ate were about five thousand men,
not counting women and children.

Tony Melendez was born without any arms. But he was also born with a gift for music, so he developed a unique way to share that gift. He played with his feet, starting with a push-button organ and moving to the guitar and harmonica. Combining his musical gifts with his faith, Melendez became involved in music ministry.

In 1987, he played before Pope John Paul II, who leaped out of his seat, embraced the young man, and said, “My wish for you is to continue giving this hope to all the people.” Melendez is still doing that through his ministry, giving concerts and motivational talks, supporting people with disabilities, and helping young-adult and missionary programs.

Tony Melendez is a perfect illustration of the principle we see at work in today’s reading. The disciples didn’t have that much going for them. Five loaves and two fish couldn’t possibly feed such a huge crowd! But they brought their meager portion to Jesus, who blessed it and gave it back to them. Notice: he didn’t distribute the meal himself. He told the disciples to do it. Not sure what to expect, they handed out the bread and fish—and the impossible became possible!

What do you have to offer today? Don’t worry if it seems paltry. Offer it to the Lord anyway. 

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