Good Shepherd Sunday Update
Although two guest articles are ready for publication, they are being reviewed by their respective authors for their final approval and subsequent posting.
As for my own work, suffice it to say that all day yesterday, Saturday, April 9, 2016, was spent reading the horrific, insidiously Modernist text of Jorge Mario Bergoglio’s Amoris Laetitia with great care. Today, Good Shepherd Sunday, will be spent completing the commentary of part two of my current series, which as noted two days ago will require time to complete. However, I desire to be thorough in the analysis provided as it is not an exaggeration that every page of Amoris Laetitia is infected with Modernism to a greater or lesser extent. It is a truly penitential task to have to spend one's time reading through such a document that consists of sections that could have been written by "Dear Abby" or "Ann Landers" or by Ruth Westheimer. In other words, there is a great deal of Judeo-Masonic naturalism in various parts of Amoris Laetitia.
Thank you for your patience. The next commentary on Amoris Laetitia will be published when it is done, which is likely to be by tomorrow morning, the Feast of Pope Saint Leo the Great.
For the moment, though, here are two wonderful reflections on the meaning of Good Shepherd Sunday as found in the readings for Matin's in today's Divine Office. The first was written, appropriately enough, by Pope Leo the Great:
Dearly beloved brethren, the days which passed between the Resurrection and the Ascension of the Lord, wore not idly by, but in them were established great Sacraments, and great Mysteries were revealed. In them was abolished the terror of that fearful death, and it was shown that not the soul only, but the body also, will not die eternally. In them the breathing of the Lord on His Apostles shed upon them the Holy Ghost, and the Blessed Apostle Peter, being given the keys of the kingdom of heaven, was chosen out of the rest to receive the chief care of the Lord's fold.
It was during those days, that as two of His disciples were walking together, the Lord Himself joined them, and made Himself One of three companions. Then that, to clear away all shadow of doubt from our mind, He rebuked the slowness of such as still feared and trembled. Their hearts enlightened by faith, caught the flame; and, whereas they had afore been cold, they glowed again as the Lord opened to them the Scriptures. In the breaking of bread their eyes were opened, and they knew Him. And, O, how much happier were they with their eyes opened, and gazing upon the glorification of our nature in His Person, than were the first father and mother of our race, upon whom their own transgression had brought shame!
Amid these and other miracles, while the disciples were still troubled with fearful thoughts, the Lord manifested Himself in the midst of them, and said : Peace be unto you. And lest their reason should be deceived by the vain imaginations which lurked in their hearts, (for they thought that What they saw was a spirit, and not Flesh,) He rebuked thoughts so inconsistent with the truth; and pointed out to the eyes of the doubters the marks of crucifixion which still remained in His Hands and His Feet, and bade them handle Him more closely. Those open Wounds made by the nails and spear in His Body remain ever open to close the wounds in unbelievers' hearts : that we may hold, not with doubtful faith, but with most firm and absolute knowledge, that the Manhood Which lay in the grave is the Same Which now sitteth at the right hand of God the Father. (Pope Saint Leo the Great, First Sermon on the Ascension. As found in Matins, The Divine Office.)
Pope Saint Gregory the Great explained the meaning of the Good Shepherd who is Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ:
Dearly beloved brethren, ye have heard from the Holy Gospel what is at once your instruction, and our danger. Behold, how He Who, not by the varying gifts of nature, but of the very essence of His being, is Good, behold how He saith: I am the Good Shepherd. And then He saith what is the character of His goodness, even of that goodness of His which we must strive to copy: The Good Shepherd giveth His life for the Sheep. As He had foretold, even so did He; as He had commanded, so gave He ensample. The Good Shepherd gave His life for the sheep, and made His Own Body and His Own Blood to be our Sacramental Food, pasturing upon His Own Flesh the sheep whom He had bought.
He, by despising death, hath shown us how to do the like; He hath set before us the mould wherein it behoveth us to be cast. Our first duty is, freely and tenderly to spend our outward things for His sheep, but lastly, if need be, to serve the same by our death also. From the light offering of the first, we go on to the stern offering of the last, and, if we be ready to give our life for the sheep, why should we scruple to give our substance, seeing how much more is the life than meat? Matth. vi. 25. Antiphon at the Song of Zacharias. I am the Shepherd of the sheep: * I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life: I am the Good Shepherd, and know My sheep, and am known of Mine. Alleluia, Alleluia.
And some there be which love the things of this world better than they love the sheep; and such as they deserve no longer to be called shepherds. These are they of whom it is written : But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth . He is not a shepherd but an hireling which feedeth the Lord's sheep, not because he loveth their souls, but because he doth gain earthly wealth thereby. He that taketh a shepherd's place, but seeketh not gain of souls, that same is but an hireling; such an one is ever ready for creature comforts, he loveth his pre-eminence, he groweth sleek upon his income, and he liketh well to see men bow down to him. (Pope Saint Gregory the Great, Fourteenth Sermon on the Gospels. As found in Matins, The Divine Office.)
A blessed Good Shepherd Sunday to you all as we keep praying for the restoration of a true pope on the Throne of Saint Peter.
Our Lady of the Rosary, pray for us.