Acts 5:34-42

34 But a Pharisee in the council named Gamali-el, a teacher of the law, held in honor by all the people, stood up and ordered the men to be put outside for a while. 

35 And he said to them, “Men of Israel, take care what you do with these men. 

36 For before these days Theudas arose, giving himself out to be somebody, and a number of men, about four hundred, joined him; but he was slain and all who followed him were dispersed and came to nothing. 

37 After him Judas the Galilean arose in the days of the census and drew away some of the people after him; he also perished, and all who followed him were scattered.38 So in the present case I tell you, keep away from these men and let them alone; for if this plan or this undertaking is of men, it will fail;39 but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them. You might even be found opposing God!” 

40 So they took his advice, and when they had called in the apostles, they beat them and charged them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go.41 Then they left the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name.42 And every day in the temple and at home they did not cease teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ. 

John 6:1-15

1 After this Jesus went to the other side of the Sea of Galilee, which is the Sea of Tiberi-as.2 And a multitude followed him, because they saw the signs which he did on those who were diseased.3 Jesus went up on the mountain, and there sat down with his disciples.

4 Now the Passover, the feast of the Jews, was at hand.5 Lifting up his eyes, then, and seeing that a multitude was coming to him, Jesus said to Philip, “How are we to buy bread, so that these people may eat?” 

6 This he said to test him, for he himself knew what he would do.7 Philip answered him, “Two hundred denarii would not buy enough bread for each of them to get a little.”8 One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, said to him, 

9 “There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two fish; but what are they among so many?”10 Jesus said, “Make the people sit down.” Now there was much grass in the place; so the men sat down, in number about five thousand. 

11 Jesus then took the loaves, and when he had given thanks, he distributed them to those who were seated; so also the fish, as much as they wanted.12 And when they had eaten their fill, he told his disciples, “Gather up the fragments left over, that nothing may be lost.”13 So they gathered them up and filled twelve baskets with fragments from the five barley loaves, left by those who had eaten.14 When the people saw the sign which he had done, they said, “This is indeed the prophet who is to come into the world!”15 Perceiving then that they were about to come and take him by force to make him king, Jesus withdrew again to the mountain by himself.


St LUKE records a special Sanhedrin meeting where Gamaliel, a prominent teacher of the law, offered legal guidance to the prosecuting party by cautioning the court to not act hastily to persecute the  apostles. Gamaliel takes a neutral stance by giving judicious incite when he brings to mind two previous cases that saw ‘breakaway’ groups collapse implying that the council curb their mania to punish the men, but  to set them free because time will tell if indeed their message is of God or not! The council officials feared losing their authoritative status if indeed these Apostles were found to be divinely inspired and freed the men! 

This episode illustrates the need for believers to temper our denouncements of supposedly ‘foreign’ understandings of teachings of Christ that we find troubling when compared with what we have been taught by leaders who appeared convincing, but lacked authority to teach in matters of faith and belief. Christ assembled an authoritative unified body with Peter as it’s leader that still exists today who gave us the sacred bible in the late fifth century.

St JOHN’S GOSPEL account traverses a miraculous event that played out in a desolate place where our Lord assembled His disciples and followers so as to focus their attention on His teachings and signs. The Church refers to this kind of breakaway as a retreat where man is called to examine and open up his heart,mind and soul for Christ’s message to take root. After a long day the assembled crowd grew hungry which brought into focus the uselessness of money or wealth when one is cut off or separated from civilization! 

A young man unselfishly sacrificially offers up his meal that he brought for the journey for the sake of the assembled people. Our Lord heard the murmurings of the people and did not consider this humble gift as being laughable or rediculous, but invoked His heavenly Father that saw the multitude being fed with leftovers for the morrow! This typological event reminds us of the time when the Hebrew people complained that they lacked food in the desert that saw God showering down supernatural bread (Ex 16) also referred to as supersubstantial bread, mannah, that was ‘delivered’ and received everyday to sustain His people. Today’s miracle story prefigures our Lord’s prophecy when He gave us His flesh and blood (Jn 6:51) for our daily sustenance as celebrated and offered up in the daily Sacrifice of the Holy Eucharist around the world so that we may be cleansed from our sin and be sustained by our Lord who is indeed the true authentic PROPHET!


LET US PRAY: Psalms 27:1,4,13-14

The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? 

4 One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to inquire in his temple.

13 I believe that I shall see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living! 

14 Wait for the LORD; be strong, and let your heart take courage; yea, wait for the LORD!    Henry R SYLVESTER              

Note: The daily scripture readings are taken from the Roman Missal which the Catholic Church use in the daily Celebration of the Holy Eucharist throughout the world.Some weekly readings may differ because of the celebration of local feast

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