There are some old western movies that show the conflict between sheep herders and cattle ranchers. Sheepherders did not fit the cowboy model of the westward movement. Shepherds were laid back. Cowboys looked down on them from their horses while the Shepherds were on foot.
Sheep needed much more attention than cattle. Being a Shepherd, to this day, takes a lot of patience. The seep would be lost without the Shepherd. Perhaps that’s the main reason that Jesus compared Himself to a good shepherd—because we are needy and He is always patient with us. Logical to assume that if there are good shepherds there are also bad shepherd—the ones who care only about money—who do not have a relationship with the sheep. However, there is another reality, which dominates our culture—the shepherds who are supposed to be responsible for the sheep but have neglected their vocation. Shepherding begins at home. Parents are the first and should be the best teachers of their children, especially in the Faith. Why have children for someone else to raise them? Why do children have to come home to an empty home? Grandparents, daycare centers, nurseries are all nice substitutes, but they are not Mother and Father. There are no substitutes for the parents. Countless studies have be done on the subject: From babies in a crib that were held and loved while others were not; mothers who wanted their child compared to mothers who did not want their baby; pregnant women and how their children are affected by sounds, depression, moods. Can’t dispute findings—children are directly affected by early development years—which then set the pace for a person’s life into adulthood. How we learn, what we learn, what we choose to block is related to the home environment.
What happens between Father and Mother has the greatest impact on how a child perceives reality. If a child is exposed to affection, they see Mommy and Daddy kissing and hugging—they will grow to be trusting of others. If a child hears arguments, yelling, fighting—the seeds are planted for violent behavior. Why are we surprised at the mass shootings? Why are we afraid to walk the streets at night? The world is the one that we have created. Can’t blame God for the mistakes we’ve made. However, it’s never too late.
Every day begins with no mistakes. We are always shepherding. We try to give good example to each other as adults, but particularly to the children. They are always watching. Unfortunately, television, I Pads, computers have become the babysitters—which in many cases set the standards for acceptable behavior. Notice that the majority of video games are based on violence, fast racing, big fish eats little fish. Left without parental guidance, children cannot discern between good and bad—they just want to have fun. They are constantly bombarded with propaganda—usually to sell a product. We need to guide them. Schools, the mission of school can have a lasting impact. Not that we are the best, but we try to live the Gospel values. At Our Lady Of Sorrows School Jesus Christ and His teachings come first. Yes, we have our problems, but that is because none of our students, none of our teachers are perfect. If you can afford a private education and if you are a parishioner of Our Lady Of Sorrows, then this is where your children belong. Every Friday we have Holy Mass. Holy Mass and the teaching of the Sacraments is at the top of the list of our priorities. After every Mass this weekend and next you will have the opportunity to meet teachers and support staff. If you have questions please ask them. Keep in mind that we are a Parish School. Parishioners are given priority to register. However, if parishioners wait too long, there might not be room.
Our CCD program and the School are partners with parents in their vocation to be good shepherds of their children. We want to guide by our personal example.