Jesus the Good Shepherd leading sheep

Good Shepherd Sunday, April 21 2024


This Gospel story contains the words of Jesus, teaching about His role as the Good Shepherd to those who follow Him. Biblical literature in the Prophetic books and Psalms describe how God is the true shepherd who takes care of the nation Israel. Jesus claims Divine authority to pastor God’s people and give them abundant life.

The Good Shepherd Rosary Reflection contains the selected verses of Jesus’ words about His care for God’s people from Chapter 10 of the Gospel of John.

The Scripture Account

This Gospel passage is proclaimed on the Fourth Sunday of Easter, Good Shepherd Sunday.

 The full passage is found in John 10:11-18.

The Five Decades

When you pray the five decades of this Rosary Reflection, use these five moments from the Scripture passage. Read the verses for each decade and let the words sink in as you pray that decade.

First Decade:  Jesus is the Good Shepherd (John 10:11)


“I am the good shepherd. A good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.”

Second Decade: The Hired Man Runs Away (John 10:12-13)

“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.”

Third Decade: Jesus Knows His Own (John 10:14-15)

“I am the good shepherd, and I know mine and mine know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; 

Fourth Decade: Jesus Gathers All People to Himself (John 10:16)

“I have other sheep that do not belong to this fold. These also must I lead, and they will hear my voice, and there will be one flock, one shepherd.”

Fifth Decade: Jesus Masters Life and Death (John 10:17-18)

“That 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 the power to lay it down, and the power to take it up again. This command I have received from my Father.”

What to Remember

These Gospel verses reflect the story of recognizing the presence of Jesus after His death and resurrection. Jesus teaches His disciples at a deeper level about the purpose and meaning of his death, in light of all Scriptures written about Him. He joins them at table at day’s end and is made know to them in the breaking of bread. When the two disciples return to Jerusalem and meet the Eleven, they share the story of Jesus being alive.

As a follower of Jesus, you are blessed to meet and come to know Jesus alive during Mass: hearing the Scriptures proclaimed in the Liturgy of the Word, witnessing the offering of the bread and wine becoming the Body and Blood of Christ at the consecration during the Liturgy of the Eucharist, and receiving Jesus in Communion.

What to Pray For

  • For greater openness to believe that Jesus is your Good Shepherd with you every moment.
  • For those who are lost and frightened at life, that they will experience God’s care for them.
  • For all priests, pastors, deacons, and religious who lay down their lives for the Gospel.
  • For all who serve in pastoral care ministry, that they will bring God’s love to those whom they serve.
  • For your personal intentions.

When This Scripture Appears

This Gospel passage is often proclaimed as the Gospel at the liturgy of the Fourth Sunday of Easter every year.

* Scripture passages are from the United Conference of Catholic Bishops website,

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