Our Lady of Fatima Church, White City
Private/Individual Prayer only
Wed: 10am–12noon Friday; 6pm–6.45pm (not Friday am this week); Saturday 10am–11am; Sun: 4.30-5.45pm
Monday & Tuesday:
Wednesday: 7:30 am, & 12 noon
Thursday: 9:15 am
Friday: 9:15 am & 7 pm
Saturday: 9:15 am & 6 pm
Sunday: 9 am, 11 am (also livestreamed), 6 pm
25th April 2021
Following the Good Shepherd
I think it is fair to say that Jesus was not impressed with the religious leaders of his day! He found them too concerned with their own position and power, too distanced from and judgemental of the people they were called to lead to God. Their lives seemed to be more about serving their own interests than really serving God and his people, their flock.
So, in both his words and actions, Jesus points to another model of leadership – the good shepherd. Although we are now very familiar with this image, it would have been a very surprising choice of image for many in Jesus’ day. Shepherds were certainly not a highly respected group in those days – indeed, like tax collectors, they were forbidden from holding public office or giving evidence in a court of law as they were not judged to be sufficiently trustworthy! In a religion obsessed with personal hygiene and ritual cleanliness the average shepherd, smelling of their sheep, was not someone most people would invite to their homes for a meal! But Jesus sees them in a different light – the ‘good shepherd’ knows his sheep individually, is both tough and tender in looking after their flock, and is dedicated to caring for them and protecting them from all danger, even willing to risk his own life for them. This is Jesus’ kind of leadership!
On this 4th Sunday of Easter, the Church celebrates “Vocations Sunday” – a day of prayer for all called to the priesthood & religious life. The word “vocation” comes from the Latin word ‘vocare’, meaning to call. This shows that we are “called” as Christians to be in intimate, personal relationship with Christ, to imitate him in how we live our lives, in whatever “calling” we follow – as parents, teachers, care workers, nurses… When we live our calling/vocation faithfully and generously we give everyone else a lift. How much we need those whom Jesus is calling to serve as priests to have the courage and faith to answer his call. For this we pray.
With all best wishes and prayers,
Today is Good Shepherd Sunday, when we pray in a special way for vocations to the priesthood and religious life. It is also the day of the annual collection for the Priest Training Fund, which pays for the training of men for the priesthood in our diocese. We currently have 20 Westminster seminarians, and 42 men in total studying at Allen Hall seminary. These include our very own Lorcán Keller who joins us on Sundays for some hands-on experience of parish life.
See for the latest on-line magazine from the Allen Hall seminary community.
“Never be afraid of loving the Blessed Virgin too much. You can never love her more than Jesus did.”
St. Maximillian Kolbe