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Homily: Sixteenth Wednesday of Ordinary Time

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Sixteenth Wednesday of Ordinary Time (Exodus 16:1 ff) “The Bread of Life”

“Like manna from heaven". When we hear that expression, it alludes to the idea that the person using it has received unexpected help in a dire situation. We could use an example of receiving a surprise monetary gift in the mail when the rent is due and there is no money to pay it. Usually the person who receives the “manna” is in a dire situation and help comes out of nowhere.

The Israelites wandered in the desert after their escape from slavery. We could surmise that they did not know how to live as nomads since they had been in Egypt for so long as servants. Now they were expected to feed themselves. The slave masters would no longer provide for their needs. They were starving when bread and meat came to them.

A scientific explanation would be that the bread could have been coriander seeds that they found, or it was a substance that was extracted from the cocoons of beetles which was found on the leaves of desert plants. The quail that came into the Israelite camp might have been part of a migration of birds that happened at different times during the year.

We can look at these explanations and say that God had nothing to do with feeding the people, but that they just got lucky. The Israelites learned about their environment and were able to survive.

But it depends on whether we look at things with the eyes of faith or whether we look at things with skepticism. Jesus would say that we experience the wonder of God when we are childlike.

When we are young, new experiences often seem like they are miraculous events. The spiritual world seems very close. But then we get older, and we begin to feel that everything that happens must have a natural explanation. We lose our sense of wonder, and we suffer because of that. Part of the spiritual quest is to regain a sense of wonder.

Reflection Questions:

  1. What is one thing that seemed miraculous to me as a child that doe not seem that way anymore? Am I saddened by this?
  2. Jesus talked about the Eucharist as bread from heaven. Why did he say this?


Dear Parishioners, 

          We have had completed many capital projects around our campus the past couple months. One project that is being finished up, is a new entry way for Seton Elementary School. This has been a big undertaking. The reason for the upgrade is to make the school more secure.

          Right now, a stranger can step into the grade school and walk to a classroom. With our new entrance, individuals will be buzzed into a holding area where there are cameras. If they are deemed safe, they then will be let into the office and ultimately into the school. We also have installed new security cameras at most of our entrances. This will allow us to monitor things more closely.

          Our constant goal is to make our campus safer. Thanks to all who donated to our Today Tomorrow Together Capital Campaign for Seton School. You still can donate by contacting the school office. There are other projects that need to be done.

          May Our Lady and All the Angels and Saints watch over you.

          Fr. Mark