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 — a care Christians are invited to copy. Today is also the Day of Prayer for Vocations.
Alternative Opening Prayer (from the 1998 ICEL Missal)
God of lasting love,
fulfil your plan of salvation
to gather into one fold the peoples of the whole world.
Let everyone on earth
recognise your Christ as the Good Shepherd,
who freely lays down his life for all
to take it up again in power.
Grant 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 4:8-12 — Peter explains how he healed a cripple. He did it by praying in the name of the Lord Jesus.
1 John 3:1-2 — John reflects on the love of God the Father, which is lavished on all God’s children.
John 10: 11-18 — We are told that Jesus is like a shepherd who lovingly cares for his sheep.
Introduction (by the Presider) Confident that the Lord’s love for us has no end, we bring forward our needs and the needs of the whole world.
- For those who serve and lead in the Church, that they may follow the example of Christ, the good shepherd (pause for quiet prayer). Lord, hear us.
- For all the members of the Church, that they may love each other with tenderness and forgiveness (pause for quiet prayer). Lord, hear us.
- For young people deciding how they will spend their lives, that they may consider serving God’s people (pause for quiet prayer). Lord, hear us.
- For the members of the caring professions, that the Lord’s compassion may be visible in them (pause for quiet prayer). Lord, hear us.
- For farmers, shepherds and those who work on the land, that they may show respect for all of God’s creation (pause for quiet prayer). Lord, hear us.
- For people who call on the name of the Lord Jesus in their sufferings, that they may experience God’s healing power (pause for quiet prayer). Lord, hear us.
The presider prays for the dead: For all who have gone before us in faith (especially N & N), that they may see God, face to face (pause for quiet prayer). Lord, hear us.
Conclusion (by the Presider) God of beauty and compassion, you love us as a shepherd loves all the flock: continue to support your people with your grace, we pray, through Christ our Lord. Amen.
SONGS AT MASS (Suggestions) ‘The Lord’s My Shepherd’; ‘Shepherd Me O God’; ‘Christ is alive; ‘He is Lord’.