Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
This fourth Sunday of Easter is known as Good Shepherd Sunday because our Blessed Lord reveals Himself as THE Good Shepherd. He vigilantly watches over us, guides us in the right direction for our good, and willingly lays down His life for the salvation of us all. He has gathered to Himself the Flock, which is the Church, and commissioned chosen men to follow His example in its care and nurturing.
When our Lord instructed Peter to “feed My sheep” He entrusted to the fisherman the great and grave responsibility to safeguard the truth of the Gospel and make it known to all four corners of the earth until the end of time. To preach, to teach, to lead, and to sanctify is the awesome duty of those who are called to Holy Orders.
For those entrusted with this ministry the prayerful support of the faithful is absolutely crucial. How very grateful are we servants of Christ for the loving and kind support we receive from the people we serve. But we also need many more men to give of themselves in service to the Church. Families must foster vocations to the priesthood. Parishioners need to pray ardently that young men will give themselves completely to Christ lest the flock perish from spiritual starvation. Christ calls, Christ gives, but somebody has to respond. On this Good Shepherd Sunday let us renew our commitment to pray for an increase of vocations to the priesthood.