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Catholic Reflections Daily: Today’s Mass readings Acts 8:26-40; John 6:44-51. Gospel Theme of the day is Guided by the Spirit
Table of Contents
Catholic Daily Readings For Today
26 Then the angel of the Lord spoke to Philip, “Get up and head south on the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza, the desert route.” 27 So he got up and set out. Now there was an Ethiopian eunuch, a court official of the Candace, that is, the queen of the Ethiopians, in charge of her entire treasury, who had come to Jerusalem to worship, 28 and was returning home. Seated in his chariot, he was reading the prophet Isaiah. 29 The Spirit said to Philip, “Go and join up with that chariot.” 30 Philip ran up and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet and said, “Do you understand what you are reading?” 31 He replied, “How can I, unless someone instructs me?” So he invited Philip to get in and sit with him. 32 This was the scripture passage he was reading:
“Like a sheep he was led to the slaughter,
and as a lamb before its shearer is silent,
so he opened not his mouth.
33 In (his) humiliation justice was denied him.
Who will tell of his posterity?
For his life is taken from the earth.”
34 Then the eunuch said to Philip in reply, “I beg you, about whom is the prophet saying this? About himself, or about someone else?” 35 Then Philip opened his mouth and, beginning with this scripture passage, he proclaimed Jesus to him. 36 As they traveled along the road they came to some water, and the eunuch said, “Look, there is water. What is to prevent my being baptized?” [37 ] 38 Then he ordered the chariot to stop, and Philip and the eunuch both went down into the water, and he baptized him. 39 When they came out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord snatched Philip away, and the eunuch saw him no more, but continued on his way rejoicing. 40 Philip came to Azotus, and went about proclaiming the good news to all the towns until he reached Caesarea.
Psalm 66:8-9, 16-17, 20
Response: Let all the earth cry out to God with joy.
44 No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draw him, and I will raise him on the last day. 45 It is written in the prophets:
‘They shall all be taught by God.’
Everyone who listens to my Father and learns from him comes to me. 46 Not that anyone has seen the Father except the one who is from God; he has seen the Father. 47 Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life. 48 I am the bread of life. 49 Your ancestors ate the manna in the desert, but they died; 50 this is the bread that comes down from heaven so that one may eat it and not die. 51 I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world.”
Powerful Catholic Reflections Daily
Title: Guided by the Spirit
Statement: Our God is a living God, eternal and everlasting. He bestows upon us His own life, and we too shall live forever.
In the gospel, Jesus expounds on the concept of life and the sustenance it requires, likening Himself to the “bread of life” and the “living bread.” Bread is nourishing and strengthening, and “bread of life” implies bread that possesses life, bread that is intrinsically connected to life. The term “living bread” suggests that Jesus is not like any other bread that is temporary and fleeting.
Jesus draws a contrast between Himself as the bread of life and other bread and manna, which are not alive. While they may give temporary physical life and sustenance, life is not inherent to their nature. Giving life is merely a function for them. However, Jesus not only gives bread to sustain us, He Himself is the bread. He offers Himself as a sacrifice to give us life.
Jesus imparts life that is intrinsic to His very nature. He is the author of eternal life, and the life He gives is everlasting and imperishable. The life Jesus bestows is not merely physical and partial, but holistic and inward. It transforms the whole person and permeates all aspects of life.
Jesus’ self-revelation as the “Bread of life” serves several purposes. It invites us to recognize His divine identity and place deep faith in Him. It highlights our indispensable need for Him in our lives. It urges us to receive Him and be fully united with Him, just as bread assimilates into the body, providing nourishment and strength.
Ultimately, we are called to emulate Jesus, the bread of life, and become life-giving for others. We are to sustain and nurture others like bread, becoming channels and promoters of a culture of life. We are to be taught by God so that we can become teachers who instruct others.
This is exemplified by Philip in the first reading, who is taught by Christ and God, and in turn, teaches the Ethiopian eunuch, leading him to Jesus.
Call to Action: It is imperative for all of us to be receptive to being taught by God. We must be filled and guided by the Spirit to fulfill this calling.