Reflection from Fr. Taylor: May 7, 2017, 4th Sunday of Easter

Today is often referred to as “Good Shepherd Sunday” because the Gospel reminds us of some aspect as Jesus Christ as Lord and Shepherd.  The image of Jesus as a Good Shepherd is one of the oldest found among the early Christians.  Shepherds were always seen as someone offered for security and care.  Since God puts all of us in this world to look after one another we can say that we are shepherds of one another, but at the same time we are sheep who need to follow.  It is a reassuring symbol to know that it is a  blessing to see Jesus Christ as a redeemer and shepherd who laid His life down for us His sheep.

It is important however to remember that the shepherd has responsibility of caring for others.  Since we are human and make mistakes we do not always live up to the responsibilities that God asks of each of us.  In the 1st reading from the Acts of the Apostles Peter and the Disciples realized this as they are “cut to the heart”.  They could think of ways they let Jesus down during His passion and death.  Then psalm 23, one of the most popular ones in the Bible, reminds us that the Lord is our shepherd and we are to follow in His lead.  This comforting psalm is often used in times of sadness and at funerals. It reminds us that when we suffer, we do not suffer alone but we have the Lord and one another.

Being a shepherd is not limited to ordained ministers alone, but to all of us as we go about our daily care of one another.  We use our gifts and we use our talents to help build the body of Christ.  We have been redeemed in the blood of the lamb who takes away the sins of the world.  As we see the face of Jesus in others we live out that role both as shepherd and sheep.

May each of continue to have a Blessed, Holy and Peace-filled Easter Season.

 

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