Fourth Sunday of Easter
In the second reading (Rev. 7:9, 14-17) John describes the vision that he had. He saw people of every nation, tribe and language, in great numbers wearing white robes and holding palm branches gathered in front of the throne of the Lamb (Christ). The followers of the Lamb were from all over the world. Salvation is available to all who have washed their robes by trusting in the saving action of Jesus– the Lamb of God. They have gone through trials and tribulations, but are saved by the lamb. They will have no more hunger or thirst, no more wants and needs. All their needs are fulfilled, for the lamb shepherds them.
He is the good shepherd that Jesus speaks about in John 10:27-30. Do you follow the good shepherd? Are we his messengers? Or do we chase the messengers with attacks, criticisms and animosity? In spite of the opposition the message will be carried out. Those who listen and follow will find joy and peace in the presence of the lamb, the good shepherd.
God is lavishing his unquestionable, unfailing love constantly upon us. God is love. Through the waters of Baptism we are washed clean, we become God’s children filled with grace, and we enter the family of God – the Church. On this earth we are vulnerable; we fall short of a family expectation. Neglectful of God’s love and mercy we become quarrelsome, selfish, greedy rather than thoughtful, cooperative, generous and loving. Thus distancing from God’s love we enter into the darkness of evil. God’s love searches for us, calling us for reconciliation. He arranges for it through the ministerial priesthood –ordination of priests. After resurrection when Jesus appeared to the Apostles he offered this sacrament. (John 20:22) “Receive the Holy Spirit. Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain are retained.” Through the Church and his ministers who represent the Good Shepard in tending the sheep, God’s love continues to flow into the love of the people. We pray that more people may volunteer to join the ministers of the Good Shepard.