The Gospel of the day (Mark 8, 1–10)

The miracle of multiplying seven loaves of bread and a few fish

During those days another large crowd gathered. Since they had nothing to eat, Jesus called his disciples to him and said, “I have compassion for these people; they have already been with me three days and have nothing to eat. If I send them home hungry, they will collapse on the way, because some of them have come a long distance.”

His disciples answered, “But where in this remote place can anyone get enough bread to feed them?”

“How many loaves do you have?” Jesus asked.

“Seven,” they replied.

He told the crowd to sit down on the ground. When he had taken the seven loaves and given thanks, he broke them and gave them to his disciples to distribute to the people, and they did so. They had a few small fish as well; he gave thanks for them also and told the disciples to distribute them. The people ate and were satisfied. Afterward the disciples picked up seven basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. About four thousand were present. After he had sent them away, 10 he got into the boat with his disciples and went to the region of Dalmanutha.

The attitude of the Christian regarding material nourishment

Saint Basil the Great, The great rules, Cap. II, Î. 19, R. II, in Church Fathers and Writers (1989), vol. 18, p. 253

„(…) It is inconsistent to use victuals for strengthening our body on one side and on the other side, by the same victuals to fight against the body and impede it to fulfill the commandment. But exactly this thing may be useful for us as an example that we have to accustom the soul to avoid what is prejudicial, even if it brings pleasure. Thus we must prefer in any case what can be prepared in an easier way, so that we may not seek under the pretext of  abstention more expensive and richer food and prepare the meals with all kinds of expensive spices. We should choose what can be easily found from every country, what it is cheap and can be easily be prepared by the majority; and from what it is important lety us use only what is absolutely necessary for life, as it is the oil and the similar stuff and what can be used for necessary easing of the sick and this if it can be found without much unrest, without fuss, without much rush.

Clement from Alexandria, The teacher, 2nd Book, Cap. I, 17.3., in Church Fathers and Writers (1982), vol. 4, pp. 239-240

Plenty of food generates suffering, oblivion and recklessness. They say the bodies of children when they begin to grow are nicely developed if they are given less food; the breath which helps at growth is not obstructed by food, since plenty of food stops the good development of growth.

Cassiodor, Tripartite Church History, 8th Book, Chapter I in Church Fathers and Writers (1998), vol. 75, p. 315

Another one called Pior was eating while walking. Asked why he was eating like that he said: `I don`t want to use food as something necessary but prefer to do something else instead. Asked the same by another one he said: `So that my soul won`t feel any physical pleasure while eating.


Previous Post

Do like this and you will save your soul

Next Post

In spiritual life a spiritual guide is necessary

Related Posts