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You give them something to eat

Eighth Sun­day Af­ter Pen­te­cost. [I Cor. 1:10-18; Matt. 14:14-22] Be­fore the mi­rac­u­lous fill­ing of the five thou­sand peo­ple, the dis­ci­ples of the Lord want­ed the peo­ple to be sent a­way; but the Lord said to them: They need not de­part; give ye them to eat. Let us learn this word, and each time the en­e­my sug­gests to us to re­fuse some­one who asks for some­thing, let us say from the face of the Lord: “They need not de­part, give ye them to eat” — and let us give what­ev­er we find at hand. The en­e­my de­stroys the de­sire to of­fer char­i­ty, and sug­gests that may­be the asker is not wor­thy of be­ing giv­en to; but the Lord did not in­ves­ti­gate the worthiness of those sit­ting there: he served ev­ery­one e­qual­ly, while of course, not ev­ery­one was e­qual­ly devoted to Him; per­haps there were even those who lat­er cried: “cru­ci­fy him.” Such is God’s over­all prov­i­dence to­ward us: He mak­eth His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and send­eth rain on the just and on the un­just (Matt. 5:45). If on­ly the Lord would help us even a ti­ny bit to be mer­ci­ful, as our heav­en­ly Fa­ther is mer­ci­ful (Luke 6:36).

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