We’re all looking for a leader, whether we realise it or not. This week, The Australian reported that ‘tipoffs to the National Security Hotline in Australia’s largest state have increased tenfold in two years’.
[NSW Police Force Counter Terrorism Command Head, Mark Murdoch] said that in 2013 NSW police received just 769 referrals from the National Security Hotline, which was set up in 2002 by the Howard government as a clearing-house for information from the public.
Last year, that figure jumped to 4600. This year, NSW police are projecting an estimated 6900 referrals, an almost tenfold increase on the figures of just two years ago.
…He said his officers often had just hours in which to thwart deadly terror attacks. Increasingly those attacks were either inspired or assisted by jihadists in Syria or Iraq, with the offenders getting younger and younger. Schoolchildren as young as 14 were falling under the spell of Islamic State, Mr Murdoch said.
These children are hungry for a leader, like sheep looking for a shepherd, except that they’ve attached themselves to evil shepherds, who are inspired by Satan himself. The news media will always attribute this to the wrong causes, because they do not understand the workings of Satan in the world. By contrast, the people in today’s Gospel are also described as ‘sheep without a shepherd’, but God rescues them by coming in his own person. Jesus ‘took pity on them because they were like sheep without a shepherd, and he set himself to teach them at some length.’ Let us pray that more of the lost sheep in our country will recognise the voice of the Good Shepherd, and that God will raise up strong evangelists and leaders in the Church.
Download this Sunday’s readings:,
Word format: Year B 16th Sunday 2015
Pdf format: Year B 16th Sunday 2015
For more on this, listen to Fr Barron’s homily, Looking for a Shepherd.
And for a word study on today’s readings, go to Dr John Bergsma’s commentary, The Shepherd Teaches the Flock.