Our scripture readings today remind us of the need for a shepherd, one to guide us and lead us in the right path. Jesus offers us the route that could be followed by those who follow him: “As Jesus went ashore, he saw a great crowd; and he had compassion for them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd.” It was his motivation two thousand years ago.
It’s the path of compassion and uniting the flock. We have the beautiful Psalm 23. “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.” The psalm goes on to speak of how he restores my soul and leads me in the right paths, even though I walk through the darkest valley. We all know that longing for a guiding hand to lead us through the darkness.
We need shepherds. Are there any? The sad fact is that many of the people who are fostering a divided world in need of a shepherd are, actually, the very shepherds that we have. That is even true in the Catholic Church. Oh! Most shepherds are good and decent. But some are helping to scatter the sheep, rather than bring them together.