Feeding the hungry – First Corporal Work of Mercy
The Works of Mercy through the eyes of a biblical scholar
In preparation for the meeting promoted and organised by Spazio Spadoni to be held from 17 to 28 July 2023, aimed at creating tools for spreading knowledge of the Works of Mercy around the world, each day will feature a reflection on a specific Work of Mercy edited by our friend and biblical scholar Carlo Miglietta.
The days, which will come to life in July, will see the participation of some friends of Spazio Spadoni coming not only from various parts of Italy, but also from Burkina Faso, Benin, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, India, Burundi; others connected from Albania, Uganda, South Sudan and Mexico. These are the territories where Spazio Spadoni’s projects have come to life, both in the form of a social enterprise (HIC SUM) and in the form of a commitment to spreading the Works of Mercy.
The first corporal Work of Mercy is “feeding the hungry”
The biblical scholar points out that he who performs this work is similar to:
- God, who in the wilderness gave Israel “bread from heaven when they were hungry” (Ne 9:15), “gives bread to the hungry” (Ps 145:7), “gives food to all in due season” (Ps 103:27), “has filled the hungry with good things” (Lk 1:53), and who promises the blessed in the Kingdom: “They shall hunger no more” (Rev 7:16).
- Jesus, who urged to multiply loaves and fishes for the hungry crowds. This miracle is reported by all four Evangelists, but Mark and Matthew recount it twice (Mk 6:30-44; 8:1-16; Mt 14:13-21; 15:32-39; Lk 9:10-17; Jn 6:1-13). “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will hunger no more” (Jn 6:35).
- Tobi: “They gave bread to the hungry” (Tb 1:17).
The biblical scholar also reminds us that he who feeds the hungry hears the Word of God. Below some excerpts:
- “Do not grieve a hungry man” (Sir 4:2).
- “Give your bread to the hungry” (Tob 4:16).
- “Is not this rather the fast I want…? Does it not consist in sharing bread with the hungry” (Is 58:6-7.10).
- “If one shares bread with the hungry…, he is righteous and shall live” (Ez 18:7,16).
- “If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat” (Pr 25.21).
- “Feed them yourselves” (Mk 6:37).
The biblical scholar leaves us at the conclusion of this work with a provocation, a question. Do we know how to be “fishers of men” (Mk 1:7), identifying those who feed the hungry and proclaiming the beatitude of mercy that reads “Blessed are the merciful” (Mt 5:7)?
The re-Evolution of Spazio Spadoni
The re-Evolution that Spazio Spadoni proposes to generate is basically aimed at emphasising the importance of praying the Works, so that the Lord may increase our ability to generate in others (at the time of the deed’s completion and in everyone indiscriminately), an awareness of God’s Mercy.