King Herod killed the prophet John in Machaerus, the people were filled
with rage and fear. We were then in Jerusalem. After knowing what had
happened, we hurriedly returned to Galilee by way of the mountains...
Ay, Philip, I can't stand it anymore... my feet are swollen!
Philip: Stop complaining, Nat. It won't take much longer.
Nathanael: What'dya mean it won't take long? We haven't reached
Philip: Man, I mean, it won't take long for us to be beheaded
like John the Baptist. By then, we won't feel the pain anymore. Not
even the corns on our feet!
Nathanael: If that's meant to be a joke, it's not funny.
several hours on the road....
Hey, fellows, I can see Capernaum! Look over there!
Peter: Long live our Lake of Galilee!
Philip: And long live these thirteen crazy men who will dip themselves
into it again!
three days of walking on the road, we returned home. We were happy,
in spite of the long journey. As always, Peter and I started to run
the last mile, to see who arrived first.....
Damn you, stone thrower, you won't be first this time...!
we got to Jerusalem, Peter's family, ours and half of the barrio folks
were all out to receive us and to find out how things were in Jerusalem...
Neighbor: Hey Peter, is it true what they say, that Pontius Pilate
stole the temple's money again for his damned aqueduct?
Peter: Not only that! All the prisons are overcrowded. From the
temple's atrium, you could hear the shouts of the tormentors in the
Another Neighbor: Swine!
John: Before we left, they crucified ten more Zealots. These
were ten young men who were full of life and were ready to fight!
Zebedee: Yeah. They even took Linus and Manasses prisoners, including
the son of old Sixto.
They were after the husband of your friend Chloe, and he had to
hide in the lepers' caves. Gideon, the Sadducee, reported him.
John: What a traitor!
A Neighbor: A group of ironsmiths protested against the latest
tax imposed on bronze, and presto!... all of them ended up in jail.
Salome: And were all beaten!
Zebedee: It's been six days now, but they haven't been released
Jesus: What about their families?
Zebedee: As you might expect, Jesus. They're all suffering from
hunger. What else can they do? Before, it was the beggars and the farmers
who lost their harvest. Now it's the prisoners' children. This leaves
Capernaum in a pitiful state.
John: We've got to do something, Jesus. We can't just take it
Philip: That's exactly my point. We went to Jerusalem, and now,
we're back from Jerusalem. Now, what?
Since all thirteen of us are here, we can plan something.
Salome: Don't make trouble, Peter, if you want your head spared.
Herod's policemen saw four men in the inn, and accusing them of conspiracy,
Jesus: Let's stay outside the city, so as not to arouse suspicion.
Yeah, tomorrow we can go and look for a quiet place where we can discuss
this... Do you all agree?
Nathanael: Right, tomorrow morning will be fine. But if it's
in the afternoon, better. I'm too dead tired to go even one more step.
My kidneys are killing me!
next day - in the afternoon - James asked old Gaspar to lend us his
big boat. All thirteen rode toward the direction of Bethsaida. It was
spring and the lakeshore was teeming with flowers and the grass was
Hey, you Peter! Did you bring along some olives to fill up our bellies?
Peter: Here, grab them... olives and bread!
Philip: Why are those men along the coast? Could anything be
John: They're probably drowning. The water is rough along those
Man: Hey, you on the boat, come over here! C'mon!
Nathanael: I guess we're gonna be the ones to drown. Look, Peter,
these men making signs at us, aren't they the twins from the big house?
Peter: Exactly... How come they're here?
Gaspar must have told them we're coming this way... so they came ahead
A Woman: Peter!... Isn't Jesus coming with you?!
Peter: Yeah, is there anything wrong with him?
A Man: With him and with all of you!... Things are bad in Capernaum.
Haven't they told you about it yet?
A Woman: We're starving here!... Our husbands were taken prisoner
and we have nothing to feed our children!
A Man: We who are free can't find work and can't even earn a
single, lousy dinar.
Peter: Well, what can we do, we're even worse off than you.
Another Man: C'mon, c'mon, why don't you fasten your boat here!...
John: Say, Jesus, wouldn't it be better to proceed to the other
side?... There are just too many people here!
Jesus: The people are desperate, John. They don't know what to
do, nor where to go. They're like a flock without a shepherd.
were several people waiting on the shore. Some came from Bethsaida.
Others, from the hamlet of Dalmanutha. There were also a number coming
Man: You always claim that things are getting better, that we shall
finally lift our heads... but look what happened, when the prophet John
raised his head, they cut it off!
A Woman: Now we have no one to vouch for us. What hope is left
for us, huh?... We're doomed!
Jesus: Please don't say that, Mam Ana. God won't abandon us.
If we ask, God will give it to us. If we look for a way out, we'll find
it. Didn't you know what Bartholomew did the other day, when some relatives
of his came to visit him at midnight?...
A Man: Bartholomew? Who's Bartholomew?
Jesus: Hey, don't you remember that man who was shouting at the
A Woman: Oh yeah, and what happened to that rascal?
Jesus: Well, he kept on asking, in order to feed his visitors.
Poor man, he had no other choice.
as always, ended up telling stories to be understood better. We all
sat down, one by one. It was green all over the place...
Well, the other night Bartholomew was visited by his relatives.
He had nothing in the pot to offer to them, so he went to his neighbor:
"Neighbor, open the door!... Do you have leftover bread from dinner?"
...But this neighbor was already snoring, deep asleep.
went to another neighbor: "Neighbor, please!" Another neighbor
shouted from his bed: "Will you leave me in peace! Can't you see
we're all in bed now?" ...But Bartholomew continued knocking at
every neighbor's door until finally, a neighbor relented, stood up and
gave him pieces of bread, just to get rid of him.
Woman: And so?
Jesus: God's like that. If we knock at God's door, God will open
it for us and help us out of our difficulties at that moment. Don't
you think so?
Jesus finished his story, a thin woman carrying a basket of figs on
her head and wearing a soiled apron, came near us...
Please pardon my boldness, rashness, but... I don't know, I think sometimes,
things happen the other way around. Many times, it's God who knocks
at our door. We're the ones sleeping very soundly. God comes and bangs
on our door so that we can share our extra bread with those who have
Melanie's words, the fig vendor, surprised us all.
Isn't it true what I'm saying, countrymen? Yeah, it's good to be
asking the Lord, but as far as I know, no manna comes from heaven anymore.
It used to, before, when our ancestors were walking through that desert.
But now, miracles no longer happen...
This woman's right. Listen, my friends: The situation is bad. There
are several families suffering from hunger in Capernaum, in Bethsaida
and in all of Galilee. But if we had unity, if we put together the little
we have, then things would go better, don't you agree?
John: I agree with you, Jesus, but it's just too late. Let's
stop this and let's all go. Yeah, fellows, it's quite late, don't you
see? Let's go back to Capernaum...
A Man: No, no, you can't leave now. We've got to settle the matter
of the prisoners' wives and how the jobless are going to eat.
Peter: We'll talk about it some other time. It's getting dark...
A Woman: And so you must. Good Lord, if we leave now, we'll surely
pass out along the way!
Jesus: Hey, Philip, isn't there any place here where we can buy
Philip: We can buy a few pieces of bread at Dalmanutha, but we
would need two hundred dinars to feed so many people!
Jesus: This is how it is, friends. You're hungry, and so are
we. We brought along some olives, but they're not enough for everyone.
Maybe some of you don't want to share the bread that you have under
your tunic, so you can't bring it out!
Right on, Jesus, and look, here's a boy who has brought along some
Jesus: What've you got there, little boy?
Boy: Five loaves of barley bread and two fish.
Jesus: Listen, neighbors, why don't we do as Melanie said a while
ago...? Let's all think as one family and share what we have with everyone?
Perhaps there'll be enough for all...
Man: Very well then. Hey, little boy, bring your five loaves
of bread over here! I've got two or three more!
Jesus: Peter, take out your olives and put them here in the middle
for everyone... Has anybody got anything else?
Another Man: We have a few pieces of salmon over here! Two from
this little boy here, and probably a few more from others...
Melanie: Here's my basket of figs, countrymen. Whoever is hungry
may eat them free of charge...
It was so simple.
Those who brought bread shared it with everyone. Cheese and dates were
likewise distributed to all. The women improvised a few bonfires and
cooked fish... And so that night everyone ate, by the shore of Lake
Woman: Hey, if anyone cares for some more fish or bread, we still
have some here... How about you, Peter?
Peter: No, I've eaten a lot. I'm more bloated than a hippopotamus!
Another Woman: Little boy, go and collect all the pieces of leftover
bread. We can still make use of them!
John: And now fellows, everyone to the boat! We've got to go
A Man: Just a minute, guys, don't leave yet... We haven't settled
the problem of the prisoners' wives yet... oh, well, of course, I understand.
All that we have to do is...
Melanie: Share what you have.
Jesus: Right. You share today and tomorrow too. In this way,
there'll be food for everyone.
thirteen of us got into Gaspar's boat and paddled our way to Capernaum
in the middle of the night... While crossing the lake, I had been thinking
that a miracle, a great miracle had taken place right before our eyes