Daily Bible Reading - April 19, 2024

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Claretian Communications Foundation, Inc.


Psalter: Week 3 / (White)

Responsorial Psalm: Ps 117: 1bc, 2: Go out to all the world and tell the Good News.

1st Reading: Acts 9: 1-20

Meanwhile, Saul considered nothing but violence and death for the disciples of the Lord. He went to the High Priest and asked him for letters to the synagogues of Damascus that would authorize him to arrest, and bring to Jerusalem, anyone he might find, man or woman, belonging to the Way.

As he traveled along and was approaching Damascus, a light from the sky suddenly flashed around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul! Why do you persecute me?” And he asked, “Who are you, Lord?” The voice replied, “I am Jesus, whom you persecute. Now, get up, and go into the city; there, you will be told what you are to do.”

The men who were traveling with him stood there speechless: they had heard the sound, but could see no one. Saul got up from the ground and, opening his eyes, he could not see. They took him by the hand and brought him to Damascus. He was blind; and he did not eat or drink for three days.

There was a disciple in Damascus named Ananias, to whom the Lord called in a vision, “Ananias!” He answered, “Here I am, Lord!” Then the Lord said to him, “Go, at once, to Straight Street and ask, at the house of Judas, for a man of Tarsus named Saul. You will find him praying, for he has just seen in a vision that a man named Ananias has come in and placed his hands upon him, to restore his sight.”

Ananias answered, “Lord, I have heard from many sources about this man, and all the harm he has done to your saints in Jerusalem; and now, he is here, with authority from the High Priest, to arrest all who call upon your name.”

But the Lord said to him, “Go! This man is my chosen instrument, to bring my name to the pagan nations and their kings, and the people of Israel as well. I, myself, will show him how much he will have to suffer for my name.”

So Ananias left and went to the house. He laid his hands upon Saul and said, “Saul, my brother, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on your way here, has sent me to you, so that you may receive your sight, and be filled with the Holy Spirit.”

Immediately, something like scales fell from his eyes and he could see; he got up and was baptized. Then he took food and was strengthened.

For several days Saul stayed with the disciples at Damascus, and he soon began to proclaim in the synagogues that Jesus was the Son of God.

Gospel: John 6: 52-59

The Jews were arguing among themselves, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” So Jesus replied, “Truly, I say to you, if you do not eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you.

The one who eats my flesh and drinks my blood lives eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day. My flesh is really food, and my blood is truly drink. Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood, live in me, and I in them.

Just as the Father, who is life, sent me, and I have life from the Father, so whoever eats me will have life from me. This is the bread from heaven; not like that of your ancestors, who ate and later died.

Those who eat this bread will live forever.” Jesus spoke in this way in Capernaum when he taught them in the synagogue.


“New relationship.”

Jesus always offers us a new relationship. He also challenges us to a new way of relating. We need to leave our old life behind. We are called to conversion.

The first reading for today, from the Acts of the Apostles, narrates the conversion of Saul of Tarsus, who became Paul the Apostle. Paul found a new life in Christ and he never returned to his old life.

In today’s Gospel, Jesus reminds us of the old way of understanding what the bread from heaven might mean. The ancestors of the Israelites ate the manna in the desert while understanding it as bread coming down from heaven since the manna were falling from the skies (cf. Ex. 16). The Israelites in the wilderness remained stubborn and selfish despite the manna provided them.

Thus, the new way of understanding the bread from heaven is to relate it with Jesus who is always willing to offer himself for the nourishment of other people’s lives. Those who ate the manna died.

The one who eats the bread of life, who is Jesus, will live forever.

We are challenged to become more and more self-giving as Jesus invites us to a new way of relating.


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