Hosted by the Faith To Go team in the Episcopal Diocese of San Diego, David Tremaine and Charlette Preslar, and joined the each week by a special guest, the Faith To Go Podcast highlights themes from the Sunday Gospel reading for you to take into your faith discussions and reflections throughout the week.
by The Center for Action and Contemplation
1) What is Rohr describing when he talks about "spiritual companionship?"
2) Who are/have been the spiritual companions in your life?
3) When have there been times of "liminal darkness" in your life?
4) How did these experiences reveal something important to you about yourself or about the world? Who was your companion in that experience?
5) How do you think we might "attend to our own souls" through times of such darkness? How can we grow as companions for ourselves?
Views and Qs: The Voice of the Shepherd
Watch this video together and then use the discussion questions below to reflect as a family.
1) What was it like to watch the sheep respond to the farmer? 2) Did you think it would make a difference who was calling them? 3) Are there some voices in your life that you respond to differently than others? 4) Who's voices in your life bring joy? 5) What does God's voice "sound" like in your life? Does it have a "sound" or is there some other way you "hear" it?
Feast and Faith: The Sheep and the Gate
For this week's dinner discussion we will focus on Jesus' use of sheep and shepherd metaphors to talk about God's relationship to us.
Lord Jesus Christ, Good Shepherd of the sheep, you gather
the lambs in your arms and carry them in your bosom: We
commend ourselves to your loving care. Relieve our pain,
guard us from all danger, restore to us your gifts of
gladness and strength, and raise us up to a life of service to
you. Hear us, we pray, for your dear Name's sake. Amen.
This week are are reflecting on Jesus' teaching about the sheep and the sheepfold (the place where sheep are kept). Jesus says that the sheep know the shepherds voice and the shepherds leads them out to abundance and then back in. He also says that he "is the gate" to the sheepfold:
1) Why do you think Jesus chose this metaphor of sheep and shepherds?
2) What is unique about the relationship between sheep and shepherds?
3) What kind of journey is Jesus inviting us into when he says that he is "the gate" to the sheepfold where the sheep find abundance?
4) Where are the places of abundance in your life? Thinking back to the meditation from Richard Rohr about "liminal darkness", how have experiences of darkness led to experiences of abundance in your life?
5) What does the journey from darkness to abundance tell us about Jesus description of himself as the gate? How does Jesus' life model abundance coming from darkness? What does this tell us about the journey "through the gate" that Jesus invites us to walk?
Final Nugget - Rather than Jesus' declaration that he is "the gate" being about adhering to a set of beliefs about Jesus, how might in be more about our own spiritual journey and the shape that journey takes throughout our life? What elements of his own journey might Jesus be inviting us to take part in through this metaphor of the gate and the sheepfold?
Stay and Pray: A Devotion for Families at the Close of the Day Each week we feature a way for your family to reflect and pray together. For families with older children this is an at home liturgy for your family to participate in together. It is a daily devotion for families adapted from The Book of Common Prayer.
Before you begin, take a few moments to decide who will read the scripture reading and who will read the collect and closing.
Read the Psalm and Lord's Prayer in unison.
After a moment of silence, begin with the Psalm.
(read in unison)
1 The Lord is my shepherd; * I shall not be in want. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures * and leads me beside still waters. 3 He revives my soul * and guides me along right pathways for his Name's sake. 4 Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I shall fear no evil; * for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. 5 You spread a table before me in the presence of those who trouble me; * you have anointed my head with oil, and my cup is running over. 6 Surely your goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, * and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.
(read by assigned person)
Jesus said, “Very truly, I tell you, anyone who does not enter the sheepfold by the gate but climbs in by another way is a thief and a bandit. The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep hear his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow him because they know his voice. They will not follow a stranger, but they will run from him because they do not know the voice of strangers.” Jesus used this figure of speech with them, but they did not understand what he was saying to them. So again Jesus said to them, “Very truly, I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. All who came before me are thieves and bandits; but the sheep did not listen to them. I am the gate. Whoever enters by me will be saved, and will come in and go out and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”
Prayers for Ourselves and For Others (take this time to each offer one person/event that you would like to hold in prayer as well as one thing you are thankful for)
Dear God, tonight I ask your prayers for.......
and I give you thanks for ..........
The Lord’s Prayer
(read in unison)
Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy Name,
thy kingdom come,
thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those
who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
and the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever.
(read by assigned person)
O God, whose Son Jesus is the good shepherd of your people: Grant that when we hear his voice we may know him who calls us each by name, and follow where he leads; who, with you and the Holy Spirit, lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Share some of your conversations in the comments below: