Our commitment to Christ will be put to the test.
We will hear whispered warnings and denunciations, as Jeremiah does in today’s First Reading. Even so-called friends will try to trap and trip us up.
For His sake we will bear insults and be made outcasts—even in our own homes, we hear in today’s Psalm.READ MORE
The words God speaks to Israel in today’s First Reading are intended for us as well. The Church is the fulfillment of God’s covenant promises to Israel—a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation (see Deut 26:19; Is 62:12). In the Church, we have been gathered as the new “Israel of God” (see Gal 6:16). He has made us his own people, the flock He tends, as we sing in today’s Psalm.
Moses was Israel’s first shepherd (see Ex 3:1). With the Promised Land in view, he prayed that God raise up a successor so that God’s people would not be left as sheep without a shepherd (see Num 27:17). These same words are used in today’s Gospel to describe Jesus’ pity for the crowds, who are “troubled and abandoned, like sheep without a shepherd.”READ MORE
The Eucharist is given to us as a challenge and a promise. That's how Jesus presents it in today's Gospel. He doesn't make it easy for those who hear Him. They are repulsed and offended at His words. Even when they begin to quarrel, He insists on describing the eating and drinking of His flesh and blood in starkly literal terms.
Four times in today's reading, Jesus uses a Greek word - trogein - that refers to a crude kind of eating, almost a gnawing or chewing (see John 6:54,56,57,58). He is testing their faith in His Word, as today's First Reading describes God testing Israel in the desert. The heavenly manna was not given to satisfy the Israelites' hunger, as Moses explains. It was given to show them that man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.READ MORE
We often begin Mass with the prayer from today's Epistle: "The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with all of you." We praise the God who has revealed himself as a Trinity, a communion of persons.
Communion with the Trinity is the goal of our worship -and the purpose of the salvation history that begins in the Bible and continues in the Eucharist and sacraments of the Church.READ MORE