Sunday, April 22, 2018
The Good Shepherd Gives His Life Jn 10: 11-18
I am the good shepherd. A good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. A hired man, who is not a shepherd and whose sheep are not his own, sees a wolf coming and leaves the sheep and runs away, and the wolf catches and scatters them. This is because he works for pay and has no concern for the sheep. I am the good shepherd, and I know mine and mine know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I will lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that do not belong to this fold. These also I must lead, and they will hear my voice, and there will be one flock, one shepherd. This is why the Father loves me, because I lay down my life in order to take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down on my own. I have power to lay it down, and power to take it up again. This command I have received from my Father. ”
The Good Shepherd Gives His Life…
During this year of 2018, we celebrate the 175th anniversary of the Congregation. In order to have a common tool of contemplation specific to our Congregation, we would like to present you reflections of the Sunday Gospels – April 22 by a Sister of Providence.
The good shepherd allows those who were entrusted to him to live fully. Saint John, in his Gospel, places emphasis on the individuality of each of us and the importance we have for God, “I am the good shepherd, and I know mine and mine know me.” When someone is important to us we know his/her name, whether it is a member of our family, one of our friends, a colleague, someone close. The knowledge I have of a person allows me to love and respect this person. Jesus describes himself as a shepherd who knows each and every one of his sheep by its name. They all hear and recognize his voice. No one is left behind among Jesus’ flock. Strong or frail, everyone will have abundant life, if desired.
Yes, our Shepherd Jesus entrusted us to one another. Like him, we are forced to leave our sheepfold to reach out to others; it is not easy. We are tempted to close the door and stay warm and cozy inside. The good news of the Gospel must be announced to the poor and the excluded all over the world, following the example of Emilie.
On this Sunday of the Good Shepherd, Lord, let us discover your voice amidst the noise of the world; your Word reveals the way that leads to you. Allow us to welcome your voice and to keep it, so it may transform our life, taking advantage of the 175th anniversary of the foundation of the Congregation of the Sisters of Providence to reflect more on the goodness of the Word of God.
Sister Françoise Paillé, SP