Liturgy Alive Monday,3rd week of Easter
Today and in the next few days, two unrelated Scripture texts run parallel—Stephen's martyrdom presented as an imitation of the martyrdom of Christ and the Eucharistic discourse of Jesus, as given in John 6 after the multiplication of bread.
Jesus confronts us today with the question: "Why are you looking for me?" Why are we looking for God, for Jesus? Is it merely for the things he gives us? We receive much from God, but do we look for Jesus himself, for what he means in our lives? Let us look to get closer to him and to become more like him. He asks us for faith in his person and mission.
Our living God,
we hunger for lasting life and happiness
and the fulfillment of all our hopes.
Satisfy all our hungers
through your Son, Jesus Christ,
who is our bread of life.
And when he has filled us with himself,
may he lead and strengthen us
to bring to a waiting world
the food of reconciliation and joy,
which you alone can give to the full.
We ask this thorough Christ our Lord.
We now pray for all the things that matter, and say, Lord, hear our prayer.
– For the Church, that its leaders and ministers may nourish the People of God with the solid food of the Gospel, we pray:
– For divided Christians, that soon we may break together the one bread of the one Lord, we pray:
– For all Christian communities, that we may learn to appreciate the tremendous value of the Eucharist and draw from it the strength to commit ourselves to the needs of our neighbors far and near, we pray:
Prayer over the Gifts
God, our Father,
for this meal of thanksgiving,
we bring before you bread and wine,
the gifts you yourself have given us.
They express our life and our struggles.
Let them become the living signs
of the presence among us of your Son,
that he may sustain us on our journey
to a full and lasting life and joy
and dispose us to give ourselves with him,
for the life and happiness of all your people.
We ask this through Christ, our Lord.
Prayer after Communion
Our loving Father,
in the bread broken for us here,
we recognize him who is the light of life,
your Son, Jesus Christ.
Give us this bread always,
let him be our daily bread,
which tastes better when it is shared
with those who hunger for it in any way.
Grant this through Christ, our Lord.
"Do not work for food that perishes but for the kind of food that gives life," says Jesus. In life then, let us seek the Lord and the things of lasting value. May the Lord bless you, the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.