A Homily for the Fourth Sunday of Easter
Grace to you and peace from God our Heavenly Father and Christ Jesus our Risen Lord, the Good Shepherd. Amen.
Every year, on the fourth Sunday of Easter, we mark what has come to be called Good Shepherd Sunday – reading through part of John 10. Arguing with a group of Pharisees, Jesus says that he is the shepherd, that the sheep hear hisvoice for they know him (we read that section last year). In today’s text, he clarifies: he is not just any shepherd but the Good Shepherd.
Christ isn’t merely some hired hand who runs off at the first sign of trouble but rather the very one who seeks out the lost sheep, who wades into the swift waters to rescue the drowning, who crawls through the briar patch to free the ensnared, who fights off bandits and wrestles wolves to save the lambs.
Far from the clean-faced and bed-sheet-clad shepherds of modern Nativity plays, Christ is the shepherd who, to quote Pope Francis, smells like the sheep.
More than that, Christ is the one who lays down his life for the flock.Continue reading “The Good Shepherd”