for they were like sheep without a shepherd

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Sometimes when you read something has a strong influence on how you interpret a story. It is the effect of recent thoughts that mingles with the words that forms associations that might not come to mind had the season been different. The gospel readings of yesterday and today would bring many thoughts to mind had they been read in ordinary time, or lent or Easter. Christ’s feeding of the crowds with the five loaves and two fishes during most seasons brings image of the Eucharist. On occasion it also brings about the message of community and especially early Christian communities. This season though, with the readings of the nativity, and of the magi fresh in the mind, the focus seems to shift slightly from the event that took place with the crowds, and simply shifts to Jesus feeding those crowds with his message and then with the bread. The focus shifts to his mission of feeding and nourishing those peoples in spirit and in body. Like the story of the magi focused on their gifts to Christ, these stories focus on Christ’s gift to mankind. In another gospel (Johns), Jesus eventually says  my flesh is true food which is the bread of life discourse. Here though the seasons  focus isn’t on the conclusion of the story but the beginning laid in a manger, and in that beginning the mission starts with the word which is the gospel. The interpretations at this season becomes much simpler, it focuses on a shepherd simply feeding his sheep.
mk 6:34-44

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