Posted in CHRIST the PHYSICIAN, CHRIST the WORD and WISDOM, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, FATHERS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, ONE Minute REFLECTION, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES on ETERNAL LIFE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on THE VOICE OF GOD, The GOOD SHEPHERD, The MOST HOLY REDEEMER, The PASSION, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 3 May – ‘O Good Shepherd, Who carry the whole flock on Your shoulders …’

One Minute Reflection – 3 May – “The Month of the Blessed Virgin Mary” and the Feast of the Finding of the Holy Cross – 1 Peter 2:21-25, John 10:11-16

“I am the good shepherd and I know mine and mine know me.”- John 10:14

REFLECTION – “Let us consider Christ, our shepherd …. He rejoices in those sheep of His that are around Him and goes in search of those, that stray. Mountains and forests cause Him no fear; He crosses ravines to reach the sheep that is lost. Even if He finds it in a piteous state, He is not angry but touched with pity; He takes it on His shoulders and, from His own weariness, heals the exhausted sheep (Lk 15:4 f.) …

With good reason Christ declares: “I am the Good Shepherd, I seek out the lost sheep, the strayed I will bring back, the injured I will bind up, the sick I will heal (Ez 34:16). I have seen the flock of mankind struck down by sickness; I have witnessed my lambs wander about where demons dwell; I have seen my flock ravaged by wolves. All this I have seen and have not witnessed it from on high. That is why I took hold of the withered hand, gripped by pain as if by a wolf; I have unbound those whom fever had bound; I taught him to see whose eyes had been shut from his mother’s womb; I brought Lazarus out from the tomb where he had lain for four days (Mk 3:5; 1:31; Jn 9; 11). For I am the Good Shepherd and the good shepherd lays down his life for his sheep.” 

The prophet knew this shepherd when, long before His Passion, He declared what would take place: “Like a sheep led to the slaughter or a sheep, dumb before the shearers, he opened not his mouth” (Is 53:7). Like a sheep, the shepherd has offered His neck for His flock …. By His death, He heals from death; by His tomb, He empties the tomb …. The tombs are full and the prison shut until the shepherd, comes down from the cross, He has come to bring His captive sheep the joyful news of their liberation. We see Him in hell where He gives the order for their release (1 Pt 3:19); we see Him call His sheep once more, giving them the call to life from the dwellings of the dead. “The good shepherd lays down his life for his sheep.” This is how He intends to win the affection of His sheep and those who know how to listen to His voice, love Christ.” – Basil of Seleucia (Died 448) Bishop of Seleucia, Writer – Oratio 26

PRAYER – O Good Shepherd,
You Whom My Soul Loves.
By St Gregory of Nyssa (c 335–C 395)
Father of the Church

Where are You pasturing Your flock,
O good Shepherd,
Who carry the whole flock on Your shoulders?
(For the whole of human nature is one sheep
and You have lifted it onto Your shoulders).
Show me the place of peace,
lead me to the good grass that will nourish me,
call me by name so that I,
Your sheep, hear Your voice
and by Your speech,
give me eternal life.
Answer me, You Whom my soul loves.
… Show me then (my soul says),
where You pasture Your flock,
so that I can find that saving pasture too
and fill myself with the food of Heaven,
without which, no-one can come to eternal life
and run to the spring
and fill myself with the drink of God.
You give it, as from a spring,
to those who thirst –
water pouring from Your side, cut open by the lance,
water that, to whoever drinks it,
is a spring of water,
welling up to eternal life.
Amen

This is a tiny excerpt from St Gregory of Nyssa’s commentary on the Song of Songs (Cap. 2: PG 44, 802), using the imagery of Psalm 23, appeals to the Lord Jesus Christ for the promised green pastures, restful waters and noonday rest that is the final, eternal destination of those who love God and walk in His ways.

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The GOOD SHEPHERD, The WORD

Thought for the Day – 19 July – ‘You whom my soul loves’

Thought for the Day – 19 July – Friday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year C and the memorial of St Macrina the Younger – sister of St Gregory of Nyssa (c 335–395) Father of the Church

The Full Prayer as paraphrased in our Morning Offering today – This excerpt from St Gregory of Nyssa’s commentary on the Song of Songs (Cap. 2: PG 44, 802), using the imagery of Psalm 23, appeals to the Lord Jesus Christ for the promised green pastures, restful waters and noonday rest that is the final, eternal destination of those who love God and walk in His ways.   It is used in the Roman Catholic Office of readings for Thursday in the 33rd week in ordinary time with the corresponding biblical reading taken from Zechariah 11:4-12:8.

St Gregory of Nyssa (c 335–395)

Father of the Church

A Prayer to the Good Shepherd

Where are You pasturing Your flock, O good Shepherd, who carry the whole flock on Your shoulders?   (For the whole of human nature is one sheep and You have lifted it onto Your shoulders).   Show me the place of peace, lead me to the good grass that will nourish me, call me by name so that I, Your sheep, hear Your voice and by Your speech give me eternal life.   Answer me, You whom my soul loves.

I give You the name ‘You whom my soul loves’ because Your name is above every name and above all understanding and there is no rational nature that can utter it or comprehend it.   Therefore, Your name, by which Your goodness is known, is simply the love my soul has for You.   How could I not love You, when You loved me so much, even though I was black, that You laid down Your life for the sheep of Your flock?   A greater love cannot be imagined, than exchanging Your life for my salvation.

Show me then (my soul says) where You pasture your flock, so that I can find that saving pasture too and fill myself, with the food of heaven, without which no-one can come to eternal life and run to the spring and fill myself with the drink of God.   You give it, as from a spring, to those who thirst – water pouring from Your side cut open by the lance, water that, to whoever drinks it, is a spring of water welling up to eternal life.

If You lead me to pasture here, You will make me lie down at noon, sleeping at peace and taking my rest in light unstained by any shade.   For the noon has no shade and the sun stands far above the mountain peaks.   You bring Your flock to lie in this light, when You bring Your children to rest with You in Your bed.   But no-one can be judged worthy of this noonday rest who is not a child of light and a child of the day.   Whoever has separated himself equally from the shadows of evening and morning, from where evil begins and evil ends, at noon he will lie down and the sun of righteousness will shine on him.

Show me, then (my soul says), how I should sleep and how I should graze and where the path is to my noonday rest.   Do not let me fall away from Your flock because of ignorance and find myself one of a flock of sheep that are not Yours.

Thus my soul spoke, when she was anxious about the beauty that God’s care had given her and wanted to know how she could keep this good fortune forever.

Amen

“I give them eternal life”

John 10:27john 10 27 - i give them eternal life - 12 may 2019 good shepherd sunday.jpg

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The GOOD SHEPHERD

Our Morning Offering – 19 July – O Good Shepherd

Our Morning Offering – 19 July – Friday of the Fifteenth week in Ordinary Time and the memorial of St Macina the Younger – sister of St Gregory of Nyssa

Below is an edited and simplified version 
of St Gregory’s famous
“To the Good Shepherd” prayer.

O Good Shepherd
By St Gregory Of Nyssa (c 335–395)
Father of the Church

O Good Shepherd,
Who carries the whole flock on Your shoulders,
Where are You pasturing Your flock?
Show me the place of peace,
lead me to the good grass that will nourish me,
call me by name so that I hear Your voice,
Answer me,
For You are the One my soul loves.
I call You ‘the One my soul loves’
because Your name is above every name
and above all understanding
and no one can utter or comprehend it.
How could I not love You,
when You loved me so much?
Even though I was stained dark with sin,
You laid down Your life for the sheep of Your flock.
A greater love cannot be imagined,
than exchanging Your life for my freedom!
Show me where You pasture Your flock,
so that I can find that saving pasture too,
and fill myself with the food of heaven
without which no-one can come to eternal life,
and run to the spring
and be filled with the drink of God.
You give it, as from a spring, to those who thirst –
water pouring from Your side,
water that is a spring welling up to eternal life.
If You lead me to pasture here,
You will make me lie down at noon,
sleeping at peace and taking my rest in light
unconquered by any shade.
For the noon has no darkness
and the sun stands far above the mountain peaks.
You bring Your flock to lie in this light,
You bring Your children to rest in You.
Show me how I should sleep
and how I should graze,
and where the path is to my noonday rest.
Do not let me fall away from Your flock
and become lost.
O Good shepherd,
Who carries the whole flock on Your shoulders.
Ameno good shepherd no 1 st gregory of nyssa 19 july 2019.jpg