The Bread of Life

August 21,  St. Apollinius The Bread of Life  John 6:30-35

There was a movie many years ago in which people were euthanized when they turned 30, and if they had blemishes on their body. I do not remember the name, but it was one that actually scared me, for in many ways we do that in our society.  As I was walking Sunday I noticed that I was often the oldest one out, all accept a very few were white, all had money–all basically the same. This is what we do unintentionally–we exclude people of different ages, races, and economic background. In so doing we lose our identity as human beings, and see people as either like us or “different”.  We place ourselves in our “white, middle class ghettos” and in our own isolation and fears we hurt a lot of people.

We do the same thing with religion–we fail to see the beauty in all religions and in so doing we make them our “enemies”. Each year during Ramadan I fast during the day with my Muslim brothers and sisters and read the Koran–and I have found like the Bible is is a book written by human beings, with their own biases, but shining through it is the God of love.  The Bible is scary if you take it out of context, but in context is a testament of the love of God through the ages.

Jesus, says: “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst.”  In the Eucharist I find nourishment–nourishment to sustain me through the ups and downs of each day–through seeing people violent towards one another, not having food, and clothing, tormented by drug abuse and suffering psychologically from abuse. I had a letter from someone whom I met twenty years ago talking about how he can not have an intimate relationship or friendship because of his abuse on the street. In the Eucharist Christ gives of himself to them, to us, and brings wholeness, and in receiving it each day I am reminded that we are called to be crucified with him, to become the bread of life to others. We are called to get out of our ghettos. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

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