Tuesday, April 28, 2009
The Good Shepherd
Next Sunday's gospel is the good shepherd, and Fr. Speekman (Homilies and Reflections from Australia) posted the lovely picture above.
Of course, the Good Shepherd is Jesus...
This morning an Air Force pilot pointed out that flying close to the deck in Afganistan and Iraq, you can always tell what kind of animals you are coming up on. A flock of goats scatters in every direction in response to the noise of the aircraft, whereas the sheep all run to the shepherd; so before you are even close, you know what kind of animals the flock is made of.
That said, this seems like one occasion to make a shameless plug. The scripture doesn't make mention of the assistant that the shepherd has, the dog. Now the dogs' job is not just to herd the sheep, but to bark when the wolf comes, and to defend the sheep and the shepherd, even at the cost of their own lives. It is worth noting in this context that the dog has always been associated with St. Dominic, appearing in art at his side, and the word "Dominicans" being derived from Domini canus - God's dogs.
Isaiah says of the silent dog: His watchmen are all blind, they are all ignorant: dumb dogs not able to bark, seeing vain things, sleeping and loving dreams. And most impudent dogs, they never had enough: (Is 56:10-11a)
Now most of us don't like the incessant barking of yappy dogs, but in this case, I hope you'll indulge me for my yapping.