Grandpa’s favourite Shepherd: A Christmas poem by Fr Peter Day

fr-peter-dayGrandpa’s favourite Shepherd (by Fr Peter Day)

Grandpa, I’ve been thinking of late; the meaning of life: how do I know what is true?

Sure, I know right from wrong, but there’s something more, something deeper I wanna pursue.

I keep getting all these messages: Do this, do that; here’s what’ll satisfy.

But grandpa, I’m confused; to be honest, feel like I’m living a lie.


Ah, dear grandson, it’s a brave path you’re on; I’m proud; you’re starting to see;

It’s about time I told you about the Christmas child; the Good Shepherd from Galilee.

But before I tell you about him, what he did, and what he had to say;

You should be aware of some other shepherds, their false promises, and how they lead people astray.


There’s the Consumer Shepherd: it promises a lot: satisfaction, a better life;

Just think: ripped jeans with a label, a sexy car, and a multi-purpose knife!

Spend, spend, its Scriptures say; I’ll give you what you think you need;

I’ll fill those empty spaces, the dull ache, the hunger; mine’s a good feed.


There’s also the Celebrity Shepherd: what a beauty; follow it to fortune and fame;

It’ll ask you to sell your soul, but what a life: TV, an agent, and financial gain.

Youngsters, they flock; line-up for hours; anything to be the next big thing;

A parade of fragile fools conned by the promise of greatness – and lots of shiny bling.


Grandson, beware the Image Shepherd: trim, taut, terrific … Ah, the self-esteem;

Take-off eight kilos, get a tan, and go to places where only the right people are seen.

Pretend to be someone you’re not, and make sure you look good as you do;

You’ll have heaps of friends, the latest gadgets, and your own plastic surgeon too.


What about the Role Model shepherd: usually dressed-up as a sportsman of note;

Loves to catch & kick a footy, drink a beer, and sure act the goat.

Up on a pedestal we place him: An autograph, please, we beseech.

A multi-million dollar pay packet, he’s only a youngster; wisdom well out of reach.


These are popular shepherds, mind you; no empty pews, churches filled to the brim;

Vibrant youth groups, healthy budgets, and catchy marketing to get you in.

And what preachers: a simple, catchy message: We’ll look after you;

Discounted goods, fame and fortune; we really care, it’s true.