May 2, 2020



Almighty, Eternal, and Ever-Loving God,
To you all hearts are open, all desires known,
And from you no secrets are hidden:
Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts
By the presence of your Spirit
That we may perfectly love you and
Worthily magnify your Holy Name.

The Prophet Ezekiel, Chapter 34, Selected Verses
For thus says Sovereign YHWH: I myself will search for my sheep; I will seek them out. As shepherds seek out their flocks when their flocks are scattered in every direction, so I will search for my sheep and rescue them, no matter where they scattered on that day of full clouds and thick darkness. I will bring them out from the countries and bring them into their own land. And I will feed them on the mountains of Israel, by its streams and wherever there is a settlement. I will feed them on good pasture land, and the mountain heights of Israel will be their grazing ground. I myself will tend my flock and have it lie down, thus says Sovereign YHWH. I will seek out the lost, I will return the strayed, I will bind up the injured, and I will strengthen the weak, and I will watch over the fat and the sleek. I will be a true shepherd to them.
“‘I will save my flock and they will be ravaged no longer. I will judge between one sheep and another. I will set up over them one shepherd to care for them…He will care for them and be their shepherd. And I, YHWH, will be their God, and my servant…will be their leader. I, YHWH, have spoken. I will make a covenant of peace with my sheep and banish wild animals from the land, so that my people can live in the open pastures and sleep safely in the forests. You are my sheep, the flock that I tend, and I am your God, says Sovereign YHWH.’”
[Priests for Equality. The Inclusive Bible . Sheed & Ward. Kindle Edition.]

Holy Wisdom; Holy Word.
Thanks be to God.

Psalm 23
YHWH, you are my shepherd—
I want nothing more. You let me lie down in green meadows;
you lead me beside restful waters: you refresh my soul. You guide me to lush pastures
for the sake of your Name. Even if I’m surrounded by shadows of Death,
I fear no danger, for you are with me. Your rod and your staff—
they give me courage. You spread a table for me
in the presence of my enemies,
and you anoint my head with oil—
my cup overflows! Only goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in your house, YHWH,
for days without end.
[Priests for Equality. The Inclusive Bible . Sheed & Ward. Kindle Edition.]

Glory be to our Creator
And to our Redeemer
And to our Sustainer
As it was in the Alpha
Will be in the Omega
Kin-Dom forever, to God be praise.

Gospel According to St. John, Chapter 10, Verses 7-16
“The truth of the matter is,
I am the sheep gate. All who came before me
were thieves and marauders
whom the sheep didn’t heed. I am the gate.
Whoever enters through me will be safe—
you’ll go in and out and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal
and slaughter and destroy.
I came that you might have life
and have it to the full. I am the good shepherd.
A good shepherd would die for the sheep. The hired hand, who is neither shepherd
nor owner of the sheep,
catches sight of the wolf coming
and runs away,
leaving the sheep to be scattered
or snatched by the wolf. That’s because the hired hand works only for pay
and has no concern for the sheep. I am the good shepherd.
I know my sheep
and my sheep know me, in the same way Abba God knows me
and I know God—
and for these sheep
I will lay down my life. I have other sheep
that don’t belong to this fold—
I must lead them too,
and they will hear my voice.
And then there will be one flock,
one shepherd.
[Priests for Equality. The Inclusive Bible . Sheed & Ward. Kindle Edition.]

Holy Wisdom; Holy Word.
Thanks be to God.

Teach us to follow you
          to care for all that are close to us,
                    to protect those who are threatened,
                    to welcome those who are rejected,
                    to forgive those who are burdened by guilt,
                    to heal those who are broken and sick,
                    to share with those who have little or nothing,
          to take the time to really know one another
                    and love as you have loved us.
Good Shepherd,
Teach us to follow you
          to spread compassion to those who are far away,
                    to speak for those who are voiceless,
                    to defend those who are oppressed and abused,
                    to work for justice for those who are exploited,
                    to make peace for those who suffer violence,
          to take the time to recognize our connectedness,
                    and to love as you have loved us.
Good Shepherd,
Teach us to follow you
          and to be faithful to the calling you gave us

          to be shepherds in your name.
[John van de Laar, © 2009 Sacredise on his website.]

First Epistle of Peter, Chapter 2, Verse 25
At one time you were straying like sheep,
but now you have returned to the Shepherd,
the Guardian of your souls.
[Priests for Equality. The Inclusive Bible . Sheed & Ward. Kindle Edition.]

Go in peace.