“I give them eternal life”
As with the other Gospels of the Easter Season, today's passage is again taken from the Gospel of John. It is part of a longer discourse where Jesus compares himself firstly to the gate of a sheepfold and then to a shepherd. The context is the historical Palestinian one of small flocks, plentiful shepherds and dangerous predators, particularly wolves.
It has been the custom over the last couple of decades to use this Sunday to reflect on and to pray for the leaders of our faith communities, particularly our bishops and priests – though this chapter of the Gospel itself concentrates simply on Jesus as shepherd and says nothing about his successors in the role.