Acts 13:14,43-52; Rev 7:9,14-17; John 10:27-30
What is the difference between a snatcher and a politician? The difference between a snatcher and a politician is this: The snatcher gets the money first and then runs. While the politician runs first and then gets the money.
There are many voices that each person hears each day. The voice of the radio announcer over the radio; the reporter’s voice on television and husbands and wives hear each other’s voices as well as those of their children. Workers hear the voice of their manager. In the midst of so many voices, how can people tell which one they are really hearing? Those voices which are really heard are followed and we could distinguish what type of voices they are. Can we recognize them?
The fourth Sunday during Easter Season is called the Good Shepherd Sunday because the gospel talks about good shepherd who is Jesus. In our gospel today, Jesus said: “My sheep hear my voice, I knew them and they follow me. I give them eternal life and they shall never perish,” (vv. 27-28). But it does mean that we are dumb animals who blindly lead by another. Just like what a lady had said: “I am a person not a sheep,” when she attended a Bible class. The Bible is filled with different forms of literary styles. Like for example: “I am the vine you are the branches” or “fishers of men”. Here in this passage, it means that Jesus loves and cares for us like a shepherd and must trust and follow Him like sheep.
Jesus is depicted as the Good Shepherd. But the term ‘shepherd’ embraces all who have executive powers and have something to do with administration, direction, management or guidance of people.
Like for example:
In the political order, we have the president, senators, congressmen, governors, mayors, barangay captains, cabinet members, department heads and others.
In the family and educational orders, we have the parents, guardians, professors, class instructors, teachers, supervisors, superintendents and others.
In the ecclesiastical order, we have the pope, the bishops, priests, chaplains, directors and others.
In Basic Christian Community, we have the BCC officers, lay cooperators, catechists and others.
In short, this Sunday is for anyone who is the head or leader of any group or undertaking.
Since during this month is the political election period and campaign in our country, let us talk about election and who are the people that supposed to be we are going to elect and put in a government position for three years and six years for those who are running as senators. We have to vote wisely and sincerely. It should be coming from our conscience, hearts, from ourselves and not from others who dictates us. Our vote is sacred and should be protected.
According to the pastoral letter of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines dated April 9, 1995, it is said that we as voters must: 1. Vote intelligently. We should not be fooled by appearances, words and promises. Study the issues involved, the platforms of the candidates and their past records. We should vote for persons who act in a manner consistent with Christian principles. Do not vote for opportunists. Do no give those who have grievously hurt our country another chance to hurt us again. Christian forgiveness does not demand forgetfulness of evil deeds against our people. Christian prudence demands that we remember such deeds. Vote for persons who can serve you best and not for those who can only entertain you. You are not voting for entertainers but for public servants.
2. Do not sell your votes. “Your vote is your honor.” When you sell your vote, you sell your honor. You become nothing in the eyes of God who buy you. You harm your future and that of your countrymen.
3. Beware of those who overspend during elections. They will surely seek to recover their expenses with profit at our expense.
4. Do not allow yourself to be cowed. Band together with your fellow citizens and seek the protection of law enforcers, the Commission on Election and its deputies. There are no tyrants where there are cowards.
Because we are the in-charge of who will be worthy in an office, we shall distinguish which of them. We should not vote those who are involved in: gambling, illegal logging, rape, drug trafficking, those who have private armies, landlord and land grabber, violent and grab power through the use of guns, goons and gold (3 Gs); those who cheat during election because to cheat is to steal public office; those who buy votes, tell lies in order to destroy other people’s credibility and dignity; those who practice graft and corruption, hunger for power and ‘yes’ man.
But we have to vote those who are: pro-God, pro-people, pro-country, pro-environment; a person with integrity and transparency; a person of peace, justice and love and many more which are related to Christian principles.
So let us pray to God that this coming election will be a peaceful one. No harassment and buying of votes, no threat and let us also pray those who will lose in this election that they will accept their defeat. We know that it’s very difficult to lose and to accept it but blessed are those who humbly accept for God is with them always.
See Today’s Readings: Cycle C