The fourth Sunday of Easter is often called Good Shepherd Sunday, because the readings are about the care we receive from Christ, our true shepherd. Today is also the day of prayer for vocations.
Alternative Opening Prayer (from 1998 ICEL Missal)
you never cease to call even those far away,
for it is your will
that all be drawn into one fold.
Attune our ears to the voice of the Good Shepherd,
who leads us always to you,
that we may find under your tender protection
life in all its fullness.
We ask this through Jesus Christ, the resurrection and the life,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God for ever and ever.
Introduction to the Scripture Readings
Acts 2:14, 36-41 Just like last week, St Peter’s words are found in the first two readings. The first contains another part of his speech on Pentecost day, and the second is again part of one of his letters.
1 Peter 2:20-25 Here Peter calls Christ the shepherd and guardian of our souls.
John 10:1-10 Jesus describes himself as the gate of the sheepfold, who comes that we might have life to the full.
Introduction (by the Presider) Confident that God’s care is boundless, let us bring forward our prayers.
- For the pastors of the Church, that they may imitate Christ, the Good Shepherd (pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
- For young people, that they may be open to the call to serve God’s people (pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
- For members of the caring professions, that the gentle love of Christ may inspire them (pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
- For those who work in communications, that they make the media instruments of truth and peace (pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
- For missionaries, that Mary, the star of evangelisation, may guide them (pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
- For farmers and all who work on the land, that their labour may bear fruit in a rich harvest (pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
The presider prays for all who have died in Christ (especially N & N): “that may dwell in God’s house forever” (pause for silent prayer). Lord, hear us.
Conclusion (by the Presider) Loving God, like a caring shepherd you bring us along the right path: hear our prayers and grant us your help, through Christ our Lord. Amen
SONGS AT MASS ‘The Lord’s My Shepherd’; ‘My Soul is Longing for your Peace’; ‘Shepherd me O God’.