“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand, who is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and runs away—and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. The hired hand runs away because a hired hand does not care for the sheep.
I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father. And I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that do not belong to this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd. For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life in order to take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it up again. I have received this command from my Father.”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
Our everyday lives—especially those of us in urban settings—are full of loud, sometimes earsplitting noise.
In the ancient world, shepherds were held in great esteem. Their livelihood was inextricably tied to the well-being of their sheep. Sheep became so accustomed to hearing the shepherd’s voice that they could discern the specific voice of their shepherd.
Jesuit education invites all people to become “contemplatives in action” who listen to God’s voice. Each year, I have the privilege of accompanying senior students on a silent retreat to a Trappist monastery. Once they step away from the noise of the city and the pull of technology, our students hear the voice of God in the silence in a profound way.
In this Easter season, may each of us find quiet, and train our ears to hear the joyful message of the Risen Christ.
—Peter Corrigan is the Director of Formation and Ministry at Saint Ignatius College Prep, Chicago IL.
It doesn’t have to be
the blue iris, it could be
weeds in a vacant lot, or a few
small stones; just
pay attention, then patch
a few words together and don’t try
to make them elaborate, this isn’t
a contest but the doorway
into thanks, and a silence in which
another voice may speak.
—Mary Oliver, in Thirst: Poems by Mary Oliver.
Please share the Good Word with your friends!