Gospel Reflection – 4th Sunday of Easter – Cycle A – John John  10:1-10

Today is Good Shepherd Sunday. This is a time in the year when we celebrate the vocations, and when we pray especially for new vocations as well as those already being realized.
In today’s Gospel Jesus speaks about brigands and thieves. There are many people in this world who seek to deceive us to lead us down the wrong way for their own gain. Luckily for us, we have the Gospel, the traditions of the Church, and the whole good news of the Bible to steer us towards the truth. Part of this steering process is the collection of sacraments that we have available to us. We are being led by Jesus through these sacraments, most notably the sacrament of the Eucharist when we receive Christ in a special way at Mass. He became the Lamb that was slaughtered for us. There can be no greater sacrifice, no greater example of Jesus’ love for us than to die for our sins.
For many people the realization of Jesus’ love for us is the starting point in our own vocation. His dedication to us makes us want to be led, want to follow him. Who better than he to lead us through the shadow of death, because we know that he will guide us in the right way, as a shepherd guides his sheep.
Many who have a religious vocation will eventually be called to lead others just as Jesus led us. He is the prime example of the religious vocation, and in his great love we rejoice that he is calling us to our vocations, whatever they may be.
So, let us love Jesus and be loved by him, and listen to the voice of our Shepherd. May we through his love realize our vocations in life, living by Christ’s example always, and doing our own part to lead others as Christ would do.
A reading from the Gospel according to John  10:1-10
Jesus said:
‘I tell you most solemnly, anyone who does not enter the sheepfold through the gate, but gets in some other way is a thief and a brigand. The one who enters through the gate is the shepherd of the flock; the gatekeeper lets him in, the sheep hear his voice, one by one he calls his own sheep and leads them out. When he has brought out his flock, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow because they know his voice. They never follow a stranger but run away from him: they do not recognise the voice of strangers.’
Jesus told them this parable but they failed to understand what he meant by telling it to them.
So Jesus spoke to them again:
‘I tell you most solemnly, I am the gate of the sheepfold.
All others who have come are thieves and brigands;
but the sheep took no notice of them
I am the gate. Anyone who enters through me will be safe:
he will go freely in and out and be sure of finding pasture.
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy.
I have come so that they may have life and have it to the full.
The Gospel of the Lord.
Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.