The Good Shepherd Feeds Us
The Fourth Sunday of Easter is known as Good Shepherd Sunday as the Gospel reading comes from different parts of John’s Gospel where Jesus identifies himself as the Good Shepherd. One way in which Jesus reveals his great shepherding love is in the way in which he provides spiritual food for us in the Eucharist. I want to take a moment to congratulate the second graders who received the Sacrament of First Holy Communion this weekend at St. Bart’s, as well as some of our parishioners who, as student’s at St. Joseph’s School, received last week there. It is a great joy to have our young people receive Jesus in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Eucharist and join us at the table of the Lord. In this Sacrament, Jesus shows us his desire to remain so close to us that he gives us his very Body and Blood to strengthen us and nourish us in this life, until we feast on him with our eyes in the kingdom of heaven. This sacrament is the “Sacrament of Charity” for we remember the great love he showed us in offering himself on the cross for us, and that he strengthens us to live that love in our lives by loving him by avoiding sin, and loving our neighbor as he has commanded.
Intimately tied to the Sacrament of the Eucharist is the Sacrament of Holy Orders, for it is only through the ministry of priests, who continue the ministry of Jesus, the Good Shepherd, that we are able to have the Eucharist. This coming Saturday, Cardinal Sean will ordain fourteen (yes – 14!) new priests at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross. Please pray for them in these final days of preparation and as they begin their service as priests. Pray that they may conform their hearts to that of the Good Shepherd and so be witnesses to his love in all that they say and do.