Sunday Gospel Reflection
Sunday May 12th – John 10:27-30
I know my sheep and they follow me
‘The sheep that belong to me listen to my voice;
I know them and they follow me.
I give them eternal life;
they will never be lost
and no one will ever steal them from me.
The Father who gave them to me is greater than anyone,
and no one can steal from the Father.
The Father and I are one.’
Take a moment & reflect
– with Monsignor Robert Draper
Traditionally called “Good Shepherd” Sunday because in each of the years of the Sunday cycle there is a passage from chapter 10 of John’s gospel with its powerful imagery of Jesus as the shepherd. This has also become the Sunday for highlighting the importance of vocations in the church. The use of the word “vocation” is very deliberate, because it is always a call that invites women and men into service – ordained and non-ordained. And that call is the call of the Good Shepherd: “the sheep that belong to me listen to my voice.” It is always important to note that Jesus talks of my sheep – they belong to the Lord, even when they are entrusted to others.
The reading from the Acts of the Apostles offers an insight into the development of Christianity as a faith distinct from Judaism. It is worth noting that Paul and Barnabus urge the Jews and devout converts to “remain faithful” to the grace God had given them. By the end of the passage “remaining faithful” for Paul and Barnabus requires them to shake “the dust from their feet”. The opposition he receives causes Paul to turn to the gentiles in his following and offer them entry into eternal life, and he justifies it by picking up a theme that is present – but not a primary theme at that time – in the Hebrew
Scriptures – especially Isaiah. Whilst the Lord God is the God of Israel, God is also the one who ultimately calls all peoples to the light – albeit usually through Israel. That gives Paul his permission to bring gentiles into the people of God – a justification he will elaborate at length in the letter to the Romans.
- Have you ever felt the call to God?
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