This week's reading from the Gospel of John features the famous story of the feeding of the 5000. Jesus knows that his disciples will assume that there isn't enough food to feed everyone, and indeed Philip and Andrew fulfill our Lord's expectations. Philip admits that the needs are more than they could possibly meet-- particularly with only 5 loaves of bread and two small fish, Andrew chimes in. But, of course, Jesus proves that their assumptions of scarcity are false. There is more than enough for everyone, with twelve baskets of food left over! Jesus is simply showing his disciples how to let go of their usual ways of thinking and perceiving so that they can embrace other possibilities.
Last week, we had an honest conversation about what it means for everyone in the parish to feel spiritually fed. At times, the needs of so diverse a community of faith can seem overwhelming--balancing English and Spanish; satisfying personal tastes around music, liturgy and Christian formation; responding to the needs of different generations. These conversations will continue in the coming weeks as we plan for the return to our normal Sunday pattern of worship and learning. And we have already created some new opportunities for Christian formation and outreach to feed people during the week.
What Jesus asks of us is generosity, to consider the needs of others, as well as our own needs--to share our loaves and fishes with each other, so that all are fed. Generosity fosters a belief in abundance, and that builds community, the Body of Christ.
Your rector and friend,