Friday of the Second Week of Easter

Intention: For the spread of peace and justice throughout the world, especially where hearts have become hardened to God’s presence.

Today’s Gospel | John 6:1-15

Jesus went across the Sea of Galilee.  A large crowd followed him, because they saw the signs he was performing on the sick.  Jesus went up on the mountain, and there he sat down with his disciples.  The Jewish feast of Passover was near.  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.”  One of his disciples, Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter, said to him, “There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish; but what good are these for so many?”  Jesus said, “Have the people recline.” Now there was a great deal of grass in that place.  So the men reclined, about five thousand in number.  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.”  So they collected them, and filled twelve wicker baskets with fragments from the five barley loaves that had been more than they could eat.  When the people saw the sign he had done, they said, “This is truly the Prophet, the one who is to come into the world.”   Since Jesus knew that they were going to come and carry him off to make him king, he withdrew again to the mountain alone.

From the Second Meditation for the Time of Retreat | Saint John Baptist de La Salle

Consider that it is a practice only too common for working people and the poor to allow their children to live on their own, roaming all over like vagabonds, as long as they are unable to put them to some work. These parents have no concern to send their children to school, because their poverty does not allow them to pay teachers, or else, obliged as they are to look for work outside the home, they have to abandon their children to fend for themselves.

The results of this condition are regrettable, for these poor children, accustomed to lead an idle life for many years, have great difficulty adjusting when it comes time for them to go to work.  Furthermore, through association with bad companions, they learn to commit many sins that are very difficult to stop later on because of the persistent bad habits they have contracted over such a long time.

God has had the goodness to remedy so great a misfortune by the establishment of the Christian Schools, where the teaching is offered free of charge and entirely for the glory of God, where the children are kept all day, learn reading, writing, and their religion, and are always busy, so that when their parents want them to go to work, they are prepared for employment.

Prayer

Eternal Father, your Son called us to always seek what is good for our lives.  Strengthen our faith in your providence, trusting that our needs will be met, not according to our desires, but according to your wisdom.  Guide us to be instruments of your goodness to others, so that we might share the wholeness and peace that we find in you.  We ask this of you who lives and reigns with your Son and the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever.  Amen.

Saint John Baptist de La Salle, pray for us.
Live Jesus in our hearts forever.