Then, taking the seven loaves he gave thanks, broke them, and gave them to his disciples to distribute, (Mk 8, 6)
In those days when there again was a great crowd without anything to eat,
Jesus summoned the disciples and said,
“My heart is moved with pity for the crowd,
because they have been with me now for three days
and have nothing to eat.
If I send them away hungry to their homes,
they will collapse on the way,
and some of them have come a great distance.”
His disciples answered him, “Where can anyone get enough bread
to satisfy them here in this deserted place?”
Still he asked them, “How many loaves do you have?”
They replied, “Seven.”
He ordered the crowd to sit down on the ground.
Then, taking the seven loaves he gave thanks, broke them,
and gave them to his disciples to distribute,
and they distributed them to the crowd.
They also had a few fish.
He said the blessing over them
and ordered them distributed also.
They ate and were satisfied.
They picked up the fragments left over–seven baskets.
There were about four thousand people. (Mk 8:1-10)
He dismissed the crowd and got into the boat with his disciples
and came to the region of Dalmanutha.
The crowd that followed Jesus became so satisfied with His proclamation that they forgot their basic needs. Jesus takes pity on the people who follow Him and also provides material nourishment, preempting any request. Before being multiplied the loaves are blessed and broken by Christ. The distribution of the loaves and fishes, however, is entrusted by Jesus to the disciples. Even today, priests consecrate and distribute the Eucharist, our primary spiritual nourishment. Let’s pray to Jesus that there will will never be priests lacking who are devoted to the Eucharist.