Where can we buy enough food for them to eat?
The scriptures remind us that all people are meant to share in the bounty of food produced in our world. In the readings, everyone ends up with more than enough to eat. In our world as a whole, there is no shortage of food. The problem in our present world is not one of scarcity. Yet, for many reasons too many people are going hungry. The problem is that many people don’t have the means to buy the food they need or to raise their own food. The miracle of the scriptures is a miracle of sharing – a miracle of distribution – a miracle of justice for the whole community of hungry people. As Christians and world citizens, we are called to work together to address issues that keep people hungry. We believe that all of our institutions and rules must put people first and allow all people to have access to enough food. There is enough for all. We are invited to make real the call to be “one body and one Spirit.”
Lord, help us work together for justice.
Bread for the World is a collective Christian voice urging our nation’s decision makers to end hunger at home and abroad. Find out more at http://www.bread.org
“ONE is a grassroots advocacy and campaigning organization that fights extreme poverty especially in Africa. Get involved at http://one.org/international
When Jesus raised his eyes
and saw that a large crowd was coming to him,
he said to Philip,
“Where can we buy enough food for them to eat?”
He said this to test him,
because he himself knew what he was going to do.
Philip answered him,
“Two hundred days?’ wages worth of food would not be enough
for each of them to have a little.'”…
Then Jesus took the loaves, gave thanks,
and distributed them to those who were reclining,
and also as much of the fish as they wanted.
When they had had their fill, he said to his disciples,
“Gather the fragments left over,
so that nothing will be wasted.”
A man came from Baal-shalishah bringing to Elisha, the man of God,
twenty barley loaves made from the first fruits,
and fresh grain in the ear.
Elisha said, “Give it to the people to eat.”
But his servant objected,
“How can I set this before a hundred people?”
Elisha insisted, “Give it to the people to eat.”
“For thus says the LORD,
‘They shall eat and there shall be some left over.'”
And when they had eaten, there was some left over,
as the LORD had said.
2 Kings 4:42-44
It is a scandal that there is still hunger and malnutrition in the world! It is not just a question of responding to immediate emergencies, but of addressing together, at all levels, a problem that challenges our personal and social conscience, in order to achieve a just and lasting solution.
If there is hunger anywhere in the world, then our celebration of the Eucharist is somehow incomplete everywhere in the world.
Pedro Arrupe, SJ
The hungry nations of the world cry out to the peoples blessed with abundance. And the Church, cut to the quick by this cry, asks each and every person to hear his or her brother’s or sister’s plea and answer it lovingly.
Hunger is not so much dependent on lack of material things as on shortage of social resources, the most important of which are institutional. What is missing, in other words, is a network of economic institutions capable of guaranteeing regular access to sufficient food and water for nutritional needs, and also capable of addressing the primary needs and necessities ensuing from genuine food crises, whether due to natural causes or political irresponsibility, nationally and internationally.
Pope Benedict XVI, Caritas in Veritate
The fact is that there is enough food in the world for everyone. But tragically, much of the world’s food and land resources are tied up in producing beef and other livestock–food for the well off–while millions of children and adults suffer from malnutrition and starvation.
The first essential component of social justice is adequate food for all mankind. Food is the moral right of all who are born into this world.