Sunday, 5 May 2019

Too many hirelings, not enough Shepherds!

On this Good Shepherd Sunday.


Fr Paul said...

Thought you / your readers might like this short excerpt from a homily by St. Gregory the Great (from the Sunday Sermons of the Great Fathers)… especially the opening lines of the second paragraph below:

"Whether a man is indeed a shepherd, or but a hireling, can only be known when a time of trial comes. For in times of peace, just as the true shepherd is wont to stay by his flocks, so likewise does the hireling. But should a wolf appear each will reveal with what mind he had been taking care of the flock. For a wolf descends upon the flock whenever some lawless person or robber oppresses those of the faithful who are poor and lowly. Then the one who seemed to be a shepherd, and was not, leaves the sheep and flies; for since he is fearful of danger from it for himself, he does not dare to stand firm against the injustice.

He flies, not by giving ground, but by withholding his help. He flies, because he sees injustice and says nothing. He flies, because he takes refuge in silence. To such as these was it said: You have not gone up to face the enemy, nor have you set up a wall for the house of Israel, to stand in battle in the day of the Lord (Ezech. xiii.5). For to go up and face the enemy means to oppose with the free voice of reason any power whatsoever that is acting wickedly. And we set up a wall, and we stand fast in the day of the Lord for the house of Israel, whenever by the authority of justice we defend the unoffending faithful against the unjustice [sic] of the irreligious. This the hireling will not do; for when he sees the wolf coming he flies."

Anonymous said...

IMO, Pope BXVI is a hireling.

Anonymous said...

Fr Paul -

Thank you for sharing this truly sobering homily. It enlightens us all as to the grave duty of a priest. Unfortunately, a priest who acts as a shepherd is very rare today.

If I may, I believe that it also applies to all who call themselves Catholic and to our duty as the faithful Church Militant. Likewise, when we see offenses committed against our Lord or injustice to our fellow man, we should act with courage and stand firm.

May God bless you and preserve you and all faithful priests. And may our gracious and merciful Lord Jesus Christ confound the enemies of our souls.