A tenant farmer visited his crops one morning and was shocked to find Communion Hosts scattered on the ground. He felt deep reverence for the Hosts which he carefully collected. Soon he found an empty discarded tabernacle thrown the night before by church robbers. In the interview he gave to media, the farmer said that he simply felt that in the Sacred Hosts he rescued, God was present.

Among the teachings of the church is a simple doctrine called sensus fidei. This means that every Christian possesses the gift of faith in his heart and, by divine grace, is able to know what belongs to this faith and what does not. Even the humblest, poorest and simplest person can have a profound appreciation of the truths of his or her faith. Understanding our faith is not the turf of experts and scholars alone.

In today’s gospel, Jesus the Good Shepherd, pays tribute to the gift bestowed on his flock. He says that the sheep hear his voice and they follow him (Jn 10: 27-30). The Lord know his flock and the sheep feel an attraction to and a closeness with the Lord. This is such a beautiful message. As disciples of Jesus, we are not unthinking followers but we are active men and women who truly respond and act to his message, thanks to the Holy Spirit who gives us this special gift.

When our faith is determined, when we hope in the Lord’s promises, and when we sincerely desire to love God and our neighbors in daily life, the Holy Spirit leads us to treasure the truth of our faith even if we do not fully understand it. You don’t have to be perfect or learned in order to have a feeling, an inclination, or an openness to the mysteries of God.

But when our faith becomes weak, when we no longer trust in the Lord, and when we refuse to live in charity for God and neighbor, the gift of faith diminishes and we are easily led to error, darkness and doubts. It was said that in Germany during second world war, when some priests were being persecuted for resisting Nazism, some faithful Catholics defended their priests and demanded that their nation not be known as a country that killed its priests. Others were silent but a heroic band knew how to courageously follow what the Lord challenged them to do.

This week, be grateful for the Easter gift of faith. It is in your heart. It leads you to discover and appreciate the presence of the Lord even in the simplest and most ordinary things around you. Treasure your faith and let it help you to rise above the challenges and trials that come. Our Shepherd knows you… and you know him!

 (paki-share po para lalong makatulong sa iba at dumami ang magpuri sa Panginoon. thanks po!)