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