We have been looking for food that lasts, the true bread from heaven, Jesus himself. Those who believe in him will never grow thirsty. May Jesus our Lord be always our food and drink for life, and may he always stay with you. R/ And also with you.
Introduction by the Celebrant
A. Jesus, the Food of our Life 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, that is true, but do we look for Jesus for himself, for what he means in our lives? It is he who makes our life meaningful and tells us how we can keep growing as his brothers and sisters. And he also asks to learn from him to give ourselves to others, to become each other's food and drink. Let us ask him to teach us how.
B. Bread Broken for a New World Many people are hungry today. But is it only for bread or rice or whatever is their staple food? As Christians we have to be concerned about the problem of hunger in the world, but we should not forget the great hunger for human dignity, justice, peace. There is Someone who came among people to satisfy the deepest human hungers and made himself bread for the life of the world. It is Jesus the Lord, here among us. If we believe in him and follow him on his way of self-giving we can work through him and with him to bring to a hungry world the full food that satisfies all hungers.
We now ask the Lord to forgive our sins, that this eucharist may bring us closer to him and give us his mentality. (PAUSE) Lord Jesus, bread of life, you nourish us with your living words: Lord, have mercy. R/ Lord, have mercy.
Jesus Christ, bread of life, you give us yourself to eat and drink: Christ, have mercy. R/ Christ, have mercy.
Lord Jesus, bread of life, you ask us to become each other's food and drink: Lord, have mercy. R/ Lord, have mercy.
Lord, in your kindness forgive us our sins and sustain us with your body and blood on the journey to everlasting life. R/ Amen.
Let us pray to the Father that Jesus may be our bread of life (PAUSE) 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, 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 through Christ our Lord. R/ Amen.
Liturgy of the Word
First Reading Introduction: God Gives Food to His People On their journey to the promised land, God's people of Israel have to learn to rely on God. He cares for them and gives them the manna as the sign of his care everyday.
Second Reading Introduction: Become New in Christ
Christians should no longer be led by their whims and desires for immediate gratification, for they have become new in Christ.
Gospel Introduction: I Myself Am the Bread of Life The Jews hunger for bread. Jesus tells them to seek him, Jesus, the true bread from heaven. He will give them himself.
A. Hunger for Jesus As we are gathered here in the name of Jesus our Lord, we bring before him the needs of his people and the hungers of the whole world. Let us say to him: R/ Lord, be the life of the world.
- For the Church, that its leaders and ministers may nourish the People of God with the solid food of the gospel, let us pray: R/ Lord, be the life of the world.
- For the many all over the world today who do not have enough to eat and who are too poor to lead a really human life, that those who can afford may show compassion and work for a decent living for all, let us pray: R/ Lord, be the life of the world.
- For divided Christians, that soon we may break together the one bread of the one Lord, let us pray to the Lord: R/ Lord, be the life of the world.
- 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 our neighbor far and near, let us pray: R/ Lord, be the life of the world.
- For all of us here, that every eucharist may become a real encounter with the living Christ; that he may appease our hunger for the things that last, and help us to love one another more, let us pray: R/ Lord, be the life of the world.
Lord Jesus Christ, be our bread of life in the eucharist, but also be the light and the life of all who seek you, and the fulfillment and joy of all who have found you. Stay with us now and for ever. R/ Amen.
B. Bread Broken for a New World (from the Eucharistic Congress of Lourdes, 1981) In memory of your Servant Jesus, who broke for us the bread of his love and poured for us the blood of his life, who has made mutual service, sharing and solidarity the signs of a new world, we pray you, God our Father, to send the breath of your Spirit on us, as we say:R/ Let your new world come among us.
- Let the new world come, let the day come when the poor will no longer be in need and rejected by society; let the new world come when all have enough to eat. Let the days come when all will have the heart of the poor, we pray: R/ Let your new world come among us.
- Let the new world come when people will no longer live on bread alone but on the word of their God. Let the days come when people will no longer shut themselves up but open their hearts to praise their God, we pray: R/ Let your new world come among us.
- Let the new world come when all will be called children of God. Let the days come when mercy will be shown to all because there will be peace, we pray: R/ Let your new world come among us.
- Let the days come when there will be no more hatred or wars, when the little ones and the weak will no longer be despised but can be brothers and sisters, at peace and makers of peace, we pray: R/ Let your new world come among us.
Father, let the Spirit of Jesus live in us, that your new world can take shape in us and keep growing. This is our prayer today through Jesus Christ our Lord. R/ Amen.
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 its struggles. Let them become the living signs of the presence among us of your Son, so that he may sustain us on our journey to 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. R/ Amen.
Introduction to the Eucharistic Prayer
Let us with one heart and one voice give praise and thanks to the Father, for through Jesus he has given meaning to our lives and the promise of unending life and joy.
Invitation to the Lord's Prayer
In the words of Jesus, our bread of life, let us ask our Father in heaven to give us that bread always: R/ Our Father...
Deliver us, Lord, from every evil and grant us peace in our day. Make us new in mind and spirit, create us anew in your image and nourish us with the bread of life as we wait in joyful hope for the coming of him who will lead us into your lasting happiness, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. R/ For the kingdom...
The Breaking of Bread
The bread that we now break is the bread of life destined to be shared by all. Strengthened by this food, let us work keep anyone from remaining hungry and thirsty.
Invitation to Communion
This is Jesus our Lord, the true bread from heaven that appeases all hungers. He tells us now: I am the bread of life. Anyone who comes to me will never be hungry; whoever believes in me will never thirst. Happy are we to be invited to eat his body. R/ Lord, I am not worthy...
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 in any way. Grant this through Christ our Lord. R/ Amen.
The Lord himself has told us today: "Do not work for food that perishes but for the kind of food that gives life." May we seek, then, in life the Lord and his things of lasting value, integrity and justice and love. May this be our way to God and to our brothers and sisters, with the blessing of almighty God, the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. R/ Amen. Let us go as people renewed by Christ, in justice and holiness. R/ Thanks be to God.