Our right and freedom to vote enables us to choose the leader whom we believe can bring us unity and progress. This is our duty and it also serves as the foundation of our country’s democracy. We have the power to choose who will lead us. Leaders must listen to the voice of the people and are attentive to the needs of the whole nation. When they decide, they must prioritize the good of the people. They must be committed in serving the people faithfully and wholeheartedly, to the point of being inconvenienced and risking their own lives. This is the kind of leadership all Filipinos are longing for right now—a leader who is without duplicity, is not interested in personal gain and prioritizes the people in the face of crises and turmoil.
The Gospel for today tells us that Jesus is the Good Shepherd. Like a shepherd, He is the leader who guides and protects those under his care. He makes sure that He is attentive to the affairs of his flock and gets things under control. He protects his sheep from danger and if one gets lost, he leaves the rest in order to look for it. His care and compassion for the flock are unwavering and unquestionable.
Our leaders have a lot to learn from the Good Shepherd. In this rapidly changing world, a good shepherd, like our Lord, must set a good example, is able to discern, and demonstrates integrity, transparency, and truthfulness all the time. We need a shepherd who can rally the whole flock towards a common goal: nation-building and progress.
Christ shows us who a true shepherd is. With the upcoming opportunity to choose the next leaders of our country, the invitation is to be prudent and wise in exercising our right to vote. Let us look to the Good Shepherd in choosing our leaders.
By: Sem Lester John D. Cabais
“I am the good shepherd.
A good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.
A hired man, who is not a shepherd
and whose sheep are not his own,
sees a wolf coming and leaves the sheep and runs away,
and the wolf catches and scatters them.
This is because he works for pay and has no concern for the sheep.
I am the good shepherd,
and I know mine and mine know me,
just as the Father knows me and I know the Father;
and I will lay down my life for the sheep.
I have other sheep that do not belong to this fold.
These also I must lead, and they will hear my voice,
and there will be one flock, one shepherd.
This is why the Father loves me,
because I lay down my life in order to take it up again.
No one takes it from me, but I lay it down on my own.
I have power to lay it down, and power to take it up again.
This command I have received from my Father.”