Kirkham, 23rd July 2006
I would to say you two words.
1. The first word is about shepherd.
Who is really your shepherd?
Who is my shepherd?
Who do I trust in?
Who or what does me guide in my life?
Maybe the problem of the faith is not that the bishops and the priests destroy the people and don’t take care of them.
The problem of the faith is that both priests and the laypersons maybe have found the other shepherds.
Who can say without hypocrisy: The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want?
2. The second word is about priesthood.
Prophet Jeremiah says a lot of bad words about the shepherds. And there is God who is speaking through him.
Saint Mark speaks in his gospel very good about disciples, who had no time even to eat.
We think there are priests who could be called shepherds, specially we call so our bishops. And they are really shepherds. But today’s readings show us that there are good and bad shepherds. That’s true. And if the flock of the Lord is destroyed and scattered we are responsible for it. If the flock of the Lord go wandering and doesn’t have fresh and green pastures we are blame for it.
I’ve been a priest only for 8 years, but I know we don’t take enough care of the people of God. I want to say “sorry” for me and for my brothers in priesthood that we do so many things in our life that are no connection with the care of the people.
I want to say “sorry” that we don’t celebrate the Eucharist so that you could believe better.
I want to say “sorry” that we don’t look for the sheep, but only we wait for them.
I want to say “sorry” that we don’t keep the commandments better than you.
I know - to say “sorry” isn’t enough. “Doom for the shepherds who allow the flock of my pasture to be destroyed and scattered” says the Lord.
Dear sheep, pray for your shepherds, help your shepherds, because our ministry is your life!
Dear Brother and Sister.
To speak about shepherd and sheep in England is not strange. Black sheep, mountain sheep, domestic sheep, merino sheep, Romney sheep, Lincoln sheep, Swaledale sheep, manned sheep. You know more.
But when today God is speaking about sheep and shepherds he wants to say once again that without him and without good shepherds the sheep cannot survive, because the sheep was created to live from a good pasture.