Saturday, April 25, 2015
4th SUNDAY OF EASTER
April 26, 2015 - 4th SUNDAY OF EASTER
Cycle B, White
Acts 4:8 – 12 / 1 Jn 3:1 - 2 / Jn 10:11 - 18
First Reading: Acts 4:8 – 12
Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, spoke up, "Leaders of the people! Elders! It is a fact that we are being examined today for a good deed done to a cripple. How was he healed? You and all the people of Israel must know that this man stands before you cured through the Name of Jesus Christ the Nazarean. You had him crucified, but God raised him from the dead. Jesus is the stone rejected by you the builders which has become the cornerstone. There is no salvation in anyone else, for there is no other Name given to humankind all over the world by which we may be saved."
Second Reading: 1 Jn 3:1 - 2
See what singular love the Father has for us: we are called children of God, and we really are. This is why the world does not know us, because it did not know him.
Beloved, we are God's children and what we shall be has not yet been shown. Yet when he appears in his glory, we know that we shall be like him, for then we shall see him as he is.
Gospel: Jn 10:11 - 18
Jesus to his disciples, "I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives his life for the sheep. Not so the hired hand or any other person who is not the shepherd and to whom the sheep do not belong. They abandon the sheep as soon as they see the wolf coming; then the wolf snatches and scatters the sheep. This is because the hired hand works for pay and cares nothing for the sheep.
"I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, as the Father knows me and I know the Father. Because of this I give my life for my sheep. I have other sheep who are not of this fold. These I have to lead as well, and they shall listen to my voice. Then there will be one flock since there is one Shepherd.
"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 freely. It is mine to lay down and to take up again: this is the mission I received from my Father."
The image of the Good Shepherd in today's Gospel reading emphasizes Jesus' relationship and dedication for each one of us. Like a good shepherd Jesus is always with us, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, year after year.
The good shepherd knows his sheep very well: which tend to stray away, which get sick, which are really strong and healthy. In like manner Jesus knows each one of us, like the palm of his hand: who have weak faith, who tend to be discouraged, who are trustworthy, who are strong and confident.
When he says, "I am the Good Shepherd," Jesus is telling us that he is there to help and watch over us, that he will never abandon us, that he will look for us when we stray off and get lost. Like the good shepherd, he will leave the ninety-nine to look for the one which had strayed off.
Today, each one of us, especially those in the leadership of the Church, is called to be a good shepherd watching over one another. So many need help; so many have lost hope; so many need companionship and care. It is good for us to ask: "How sensitive are we to the pain and sorrows of those around us? How much do we care for those around us? For our own families? For our close friends? For those we work with, or for us?
At one time Fiorello La Guardia, City Mayor of New York City in the mid-thirties, suggested to a judge to rest for the evening while he would take over. The first case which came up involved an elderly woman arrested and charged with stealing some bread. Asked how she pleaded, the woman replied, "I needed the bread, your Honor, to feed my grandchildren." The Mayor replied, "I have no option but to penalize you, 'ten dollars or ten days in jail.' " With the sentence the Mayor immediately put in ten dollars into his hat. He then fined every person in the courtroom fifty cents each for living in a city "where a grandmother had to steal bread to feed her grandchildren." With what all contributed, the woman paid her fine and left the court room with $47.50.
This simple story reminds us to look around us and challenges us to ask ourselves, "Do I act like the grandmother caring for her grandchildren?" "What do I think of what the Mayor did?" "How do we deal with the needy, the lost and the least?"
It is so tragic that, though we are all together, there are so many helpless and hopeless because so many are afraid and not ready to act as good shepherds for one another.
WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:
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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