August 2, 2020

Homily One for the Eighth Sunday of Matthew - On Hunger and Abundance (Metr. Hierotheos of Nafpaktos)

Homily for the Eighth Sunday of Matthew
On Hunger and Abundance

By Metropolitan Hierotheos of Nafpaktos
The multiplication of the five loaves and the two fish is the miracle we heard today in the Gospel, which is known to all Christians, and is one of the most well-known events from the life of Christ. It is impossible for anyone to feed five thousand people, not counting women and children, with five loaves and two fish, and even to be left with a surplus.

Hunger is a big problem of our time. There are entire populations on the planet that suffer from a lack of necessities for their survival, and at the same time other populations throw away food from leftovers that they cannot consume. Christ is not responsible for this, nor should we expect Christ to come to perform this miracle, but it is the work of Christians, who must care about people who are suffering and tormented. Christ with this miracle showed us that we should also be interested in the needs of our fellow human beings and be moved by their problems.

Of course, this must be the interest of the governments of each country, but also the interest of the so-called rich people towards people who are deprived of even the most necessary. It is not possible in our time to consume large sums for cosmetics and luxury items, while there are people who die of hunger and various deprivations. If governments are not interested in this issue, then they have failed.

The Church, with its worthy pastors, is doing what it can in this matter. There are organizations that have been organized and are trying to deal with this great social problem, which as the needs of the family increase, so it grows. It is not only about hunger, but also about the fact that it is not possible for people to meet the demands of the modern age. The Church operates various institutions, but also with its Funds for the Poor helps people as much as possible. But the problem is not solved by charities. The State must become more social and focus on the problems facing people and their families today.

We should all take an interest in tackling this problem, and have good management of material goods. This is shown by the fact that many of our fellow human beings give priority to expensive entertainment, to the purchase of material goods that are not so necessary and thus are deprived of other goods that are necessary for their lives. We see families taking out holiday loans, making big financial gambles to make a lot of money, imitating those who can afford to live more comfortably, and then falling into great financial difficulty.

Therefore, Christ continues to perform this miracle today, in the sense that when the passions of ambition, lust and greed are healed, by the power of Christ, then there are the necessary material goods for our survival, but also we help those in need.

Source: Translated by John Sanidopoulos.