The Lord God says this: 'I am going to look after my flock myself and keep all of it in view. As a shepherd keeps all his flock in view when he stands up in the middle of his scattered sheep. so l will keep my sheep in view... I myself will pasture my sheep, I myself will show them where to rest... I shall look for the lost one, bring back the stray, bandage the wounded and make the weak strong. I shall watch over the fat and healthy. I shall be a true shepherd to them.'
In this year's Mass readings for the Feast of the Sacred Heart we reflect on the tenderness and watchful care of the Good Shepherd, who knows each one intimately and rejoices to bring us home, into his Heart.
Lovingly, the Shepherd reaches out to the weakest and most vulnerable, the unwanted and unloved, those suffering any form of rejection; and, especially, those who believe they have strayed beyond the bounds of God’s love.
All are brought home, into that wide-open Heart, where there is space enough for everyone.
Take some time to reflect on the readings for this year's Feast, which are listed below, and open yourself to the wonderful truth of God's tenderness, compassion and care for each one of us?
And how can we then become tender, compassionate "shepherds" to others?
Ezekiel 34: 11-16 Psalm 23 Roman 5: 5-11 Luke 15: 3-7
Many thanks to Steph Romaine RSCJ for photos of Llannerchwen sheep and lambs