Saturday, May 06, 2006


4th Sunday of Easter

Good Shepherd Sunday
4th Sunday of Easter - B


ACTS 4:8-12
Then Peter, filled with the holy Spirit, answered them, "Leaders of the

people and elders: If we are being examined today about a good deed
done to a cripple, namely, by what means he was saved, then all of you
and all the people of Israel should know that it was in the name of
Jesus Christ the Nazarean whom you crucified, whom God raised from the
dead; in his name this man stands before you healed. He is 'the stone
rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone.' There

is no salvation through anyone else, nor is there any other name under
heaven given to the human race by which we are to be saved."

1 JOHN 3:1-2
See what love the Father has bestowed on us that we may be called the
children of God. Yet so we are. The reason the world does not know us
is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God's children now; what
we shall be has not yet been revealed. We do know that when it is
revealed we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.

JOHN 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."

Wealth has many undeniable advantages. That is why people dream of
becoming rich. But on the other hand, wealth has great inconveniences.
And one of these is to believe that money can buy everything or at
least that it is an acceptable substitute for almost everything. But
there are things in life that no amount of money in the world can buy.
Take for example, the area of education and bringing up children. The
children of rich people are placed in the best schools, eat the best
food, receive the best medical attention, are given the best of
everything that money can buy. And yet, it is often the rich kids with
the worse psychological problems who end up as drug addicts and
juvenile delinquents.

Why is this so? Most of the time, it is because they are given
everything except what they need most: their parents' time, presence
and affection. These children grow up in the care of their yayas or
paid nurse, paid cooks and houseboys and labanderas, paid tutors and
school teachers. They spend their leisure time watching televisions,
and playing video games.

Their parents have a very busy professional and social life, with
little time to give to their children. And so, they discharge their
duties by hiring people to take care of their children for them. These
people will usually do the work for which they are paid, honestly and
conscientiously, but no more. But we all know that children's needs go
much more than that. A parent's duty is never measured in terms of
hours, payment and contract. Love does not measure what it gives.

In today's Gospel reading Jesus presents himself as our shepherd. And
he sets a big difference between being a good shepherd and a mere hired


The good shepherd is concerned with the safety of the sheep before all
else. This is so true that, if need be he will endanger his life in
defending them against wolves and thieves. Love does not measure what
it gives.

The Greek word used by the Johannine author does not mean simply to
"lay down" or "give up." Its essential meaning is "to give, to place,
to put." Hence, it is equally a sign of love and commitment on the part

of the shepherds to give their lives, the living of their lives, the
vital functioning of their lives, for their sheep.

By the very nature of their profession, shepherds had to be faithful
people, constantly with their flocks. There were no days off. The sheep

instinctively sensed that they could depend on the shepherd in any
crisis. Hired substitutes just did not function in the same way. They
didn't give their lives because they just couldn't love the sheep in
the same way that the real shepherd did.

This last characteristic of the good shepherd love for his sheep is
found in Jesus in the highest degree. He not only risked his life for
us, he laid down his life for us. And that is the kind of service that
can never be paid for, because love cannot be bought. It can only be
received gratefully.

Jesus is not only our Good Shepherd. He also invites us to be good
shepherds to others under our care, whether it be as parents, as
teachers, as big brothers and sisters, as office co-workers. We must
examine our attitudes, motivations and behavior in our relationship to
work and people. Are we there only to work for pay, or are we doing
what we are doing, because it is our profession what we are trained for

or good at, or do we look at our work as a vocation a call and
opportunity to love and care for the people entrusted to us?

For us, Christians, the Eucharist is our "thank you" to God our Father
for having given us such a good shepherd in Jesus Christ. It is also a
commitment to respond to God's and Christ' great love for us by being
good shepherds to others.

May each Eucharist help us to follow more faithfully the One who is
leading us to the pastures of eternal life.

We pray ...
- for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the unborn.
- for the speedy recovery of Ester.
- for the speedy recovery of Aida.
- for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary.
- Birthday: Dr. Alice Sy Tan
- In Memoriam (+): Ng Tiong (Maria Benning)
- In Thanksgiving: Fr. Rick De La Pena (24th Ordination Anniversary on
May 8th)
- Wedding Anniversary: Johnson & Lucy Uy
- Wedding Anniversary: Keng Huan Jerry & Emma Yeung
- for world peace and reconciliation.

Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our
prayers and for those who need our prayers the most.

Have a good day!

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� 2006 Daily-Homily

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