The Bread of Life

John 6:35-40 “The Bread of Life”  Fr. Engelbert Mvang

Jesus said: “I am the Bread of life. .” Beautiful phrase, but living in its reality can be” a hard and dreadful life.”  These past few weeks I have been struggling with my PTSD, and the malaria, both are the thorns in my flesh.The nightmares come, and the fever late at night.  The nightmares tear me  apart, I awake covered in sweat and am  weak. I force myself to swim or walk and to simply get going. But in it all I see the face of Jesus, the Bread of Life and I find sustenance. Last night as I walked on Haight I bought “James” a new sweatshirt, because I had forgotten to bring one of my own to give to him, and he cried, a twenty one year old started crying, because it was the first new piece of clothing he had had in a year or so.   Sean came up to me and  was sheep face because he had cussed me out last week and threatened me, and I gave him some food, and he asked me “how can you always forgive,” and the truth is that  it is easy to forgive when you people do not forgive you and when to hold on to it all is like having a chain around your neck–it is far easier to set yourself free by forgiving. And so the malaria, the PTSD have been simply stepping stones in eating the Bread of Life.

The other lesson I have learned through these years   is there is a third way, for example –there has been the anger towards the Archbishop over his stand on the policy of the Roman Church. The fact is the Roman Church just acknowledged Galileo a few years ago, after over 500 years, so they are slow in changing, but a force in working with the poor, the homeless.  The change will come from the bottom. But rather than attack and create anger and hate towards one another, why not meet where you can work together, and by example show the way.  Most people disagree with me on most things, but we agree on helping the homeless, and so we work together in that area.  I told him that we can disagree for now peacefully, work together against the death penalty, and when we get to heaven we can shake hands as he acknowledges that I was right on the issue of being queer–of course it is not going to matter in heaven, but I will have the satisfaction of being right. And than who knows we shall see, but until than we can agree to disagree and work to end hunger, poverty, climate change. But in the process of “agreeing to disagree”, change will come as we see each other for who we are, and simply as children of the one God.  In coming together, sitting down together and eating together–we become one neighbor–

Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

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