In the spirit of St. Augustine, who urged his followers to search for God together, consider this reflection on Sunday’s Gospel. Jesus addresses himself to the Pharisees as the Good Shepherd, one who intimately knows each of his sheep by name and they know him. He will even go as far as lay down his own life for his sheep. How comforting it is to know that God is always near to us and will protect us. However, Jesus presents us with a challenge when he goes further to say, “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.” Jesus is reminding us that we are also called to be shepherds, to reach out and share God’s love with those who find themselves on the outskirts. How can we overcome or let go of our own desires to fit in or be admired and instead reach out and welcome those who find themselves excluded, today?