Jesus says in the Gospel today, "Your ancestors ate manna in the desert, but they died. I am the Bread of life that comes down from heaven so that one may eat it and never die" (John 6:49-50). God gave Adam and Eve all kinds of good food in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 2:16). Sadly, their craving to eat beyond what God had provided led to their downfall (Genesis 3:6).
Last week, here in the United States, we had the finals of what is called March Madness, the college basketball championship. The students of the winning team are still basking in the glory of that final basketball game. Congratulations and pats on the back are still being given to the players. Although they want to hold on to that special moment, it quickly fades. The coaches are already thinking about recruiting new players and making plans for all the other aspects of next season.
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On this Monday, after the great celebration of Easter Sunday, we might ask ourselves, “So, is that it?” After doing our best to pray, fast, and give alms, what happens next? Well, for starters, we keep celebrating! We celebrate these eight days, each one as another Easter.
Some of you grew up hearing the term “Spy Wednesday.” Some of us didn’t. But, whether we’re familiar with this name or not, we are hearing about the events that lead to what will take place on Good Friday.
As I prayed over today’s readings, two things from last week came to mind. One had to do with clumsiness, and the other, doing for others what God does for us.
On Tuesday, I mentioned in my homily that two verses caught my attention. The first was, “We are disgusted with this wretched food!” And the second is when the Pharisees ask Jesus, “Who are you?” Well, it looks like the Israelites took care of the food issue, but as we just heard in the gospel, Jesus’ identity is still an issue. Interestingly, the first reading reminds us of God changing Abram’s name to Abraham, signaling a change in role and relationship with God.