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4th Sunday of Easter Year B - Good Shepherd Sunday

Sunday April 18, 2027

Mass Readings for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B - Good Shepherd Sunday

  • First Reading - Acts 4:8-12: Peter declared the healing of a man came through Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom they crucified but God raised. He emphasized that salvation can only come through Jesus, the cornerstone the builders rejected.
  • Responsorial Psalm - Psalm 118: Acknowledging God's unfailing kindness, we find solace in His shelter, surpassing human or leader reliance. The once-rejected stone now underpins our faith, a divine act that fills us with awe. Blessed by God's response and rescue, we celebrate His eternal mercy.
  • Second Reading - 1 John 3:1-2: We are already God's children, loved deeply by the Father. The world doesn't know us, as it didn't know Him. In the future, we'll fully become like Him, seeing Him as He truly is.
  • Gospel - John 10:11-18: I am the good shepherd who sacrifices his life for the sheep, unlike a hired hand who runs when danger comes. I know my sheep and they know me. I also have other sheep not of this pen; they will listen to my voice, making one flock under one shepherd. I lay down my life voluntarily, with the authority to take it up again, as commanded by my Father.

I am the good shepherd, and I know mine and mine know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I will lay down my life for the sheep.

John 10:14-15

Themes for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B - Good Shepherd Sunday

The readings for the 4th Sunday in Easter Year B (Good Shepherd Sunday) demonstrate that Jesus Christ cares for us as a shepherd cares for his flock. Jesus explains that he is the good shepherd who knows his sheep and will do anything to save them.

The 4th Sunday of Easter, also known as Good Shepherd Sunday, Year B, brings together themes that are central to understanding our relationship with Jesus and our identity as Christians. Here are the key themes based on the readings:

  • Jesus as the Good Shepherd: The Gospel clearly portrays Jesus as the Good Shepherd who lays down His life for His sheep, indicating His sacrificial love and commitment to us.
  • Salvation Through Jesus: Peter's speech in Acts underscores that salvation is exclusively found in Jesus Christ, emphasizing His role as the cornerstone of our faith.
  • Our Identity as Children of God: The letter from John reminds us that we are deeply loved children of God, an identity that the world might not recognize but is foundational to our Christian life.
  • The Universality of Christ’s Call: Jesus mentions He has other sheep not of this flock, highlighting the inclusive nature of His mission and the universal call to be part of one flock under one shepherd.
  • Voluntary Sacrifice and Authority of Christ: Jesus’ assertion that He lays down His life voluntarily and has the authority to take it up again speaks to His divine authority and the voluntary nature of His sacrifice for us.
  • The Role of Faith in Understanding Our Identity and Mission: The readings together invite us to reflect on how faith in Jesus as the Good Shepherd and cornerstone helps us understand our identity as God's children and our mission in the world.

These themes invite us to reflect on the depth of Jesus' love and sacrifice, our identity as beloved children of God, and the call to unity and mission in the vast flock of Christ.

See the Homilies and Reflections section and the More Thoughts section for further expansion on these readings and some reflection questions for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B.

Resources for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B - Good Shepherd Sunday

Sunday April 18, 2027

shepherds voice game
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Shepherd’s Voice Game

The Shepherd's Voice Game resonates deeply with the readings for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B, especially the Gospel, where Jesus identifies Himself as the Good Shepherd whose sheep recognize His voice. This game underscores the Gospel's call to attentiveness and faithfulness in following Christ, the ultimate Shepherd. It mirrors the act of listening for Jesus' voice amidst life's noise, teaching youth the importance of discernment and unity within the Christian community. By emphasizing listening and following, the game embodies the message of unity and guidance under one shepherd, encouraging a communal and individual commitment to Christ's path.

What Is Love? – Discussion and Reflection Questions

This reflection ties directly to the Gospel reading for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B, where Jesus declares Himself as the Good Shepherd who lays down His life for His sheep. It challenges youth to distinguish between superficial likes and deep, sacrificial love, akin to Jesus’ love for humanity. By comparing their written lists to the love Jesus speaks of, it prompts them to reflect on the essence of true love as a willing, selfless sacrifice for the well-being of another. This activity not only deepens their understanding of sacrificial love but also invites them to consider the depth of their trust and faith in Jesus, who embodies this love fully.

good shepherd maze
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A Good Shepherd Maze Puzzle

The Good Shepherd maze puzzle engages with the Gospel reading for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B, where Jesus proclaims Himself as the Good Shepherd. As children navigate the maze, they engage with the concept of Jesus guiding and protecting His flock, just as He describes in John 10:11-18. This activity serves as a tangible reminder of Jesus’ constant presence and care in our lives, reinforcing the message that, like sheep in a maze, we are never alone but are lovingly overseen by Christ, our shepherd, who leads us through life's complexities and challenges.

The Acts of the Apostles
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The Acts of the Apostles

The Acts of the Apostles, particularly highlighted in the first reading for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B, provides a compelling narrative of the early Christian community's formation, emphasizing the central role of the apostles and the Holy Spirit post-Jesus' ascension. This account offers valuable insights into the nascent Church's efforts to spread the Gospel, underscoring themes of unity, evangelization, and divine guidance. Peter's bold proclamation in Acts 4:8-12 showcases the apostles' commitment to their mission, despite adversity, and serves as an inspiration for contemporary believers to persist in their faith journey, embodying the resilience and zeal of the early Church.

A Prayer of Joyful Thanksgiving Based on Psalm 118
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A Prayer of Joyful Thanksgiving - Based on Psalm 118

This prayer, inspired by Psalm 118, resonates with the themes of the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B, echoing a profound sense of gratitude and joy for the salvation God provides. On this day, as we reflect on Jesus as the Good Shepherd, this prayer becomes a celebration of the protective love and care He extends to us, His flock. Just as the Psalmist finds deliverance in God's enduring love, we too acknowledge the Lord's rescue from our fears and challenges. Through this prayer of joyful thanksgiving, we commit to living boldly, allowing our lives to sing of the gratitude we hold for our salvation, mirroring the shepherd's unwavering guidance and love.

First Letter of John
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1 John: Exploring the Depths of Love and Truth

The First Letter of John, particularly reflected in the second reading for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B, emphasizes God as love, directly connecting to the theme of Jesus as the Good Shepherd who lays down His life for His sheep. This profound exploration of love as the essence of God and the foundation of Christian life echoes through John's call for believers to embody this love in their relationships. As the Good Shepherd knows and loves each sheep, so are we invited to know and love one another deeply, reflecting God's love in our community. This message inspires believers to live out their faith through love, authenticity, and moral integrity, mirroring the sacrificial love of Jesus, our shepherd.

the gospel of john
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Resources and Reflections for the Gospel of John

The Gospel of John, especially highlighted in the Gospel reading for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B, profoundly presents Jesus as the Good Shepherd, emphasizing His divinity and the intimate relationship He offers to His followers. This portrayal aligns with John's broader themes, such as the significance of belief in Jesus for eternal life and the manifestation of God's love through Jesus' teachings and actions. Understanding this Gospel enriches Catholic faith by deepening our grasp of Jesus' nature and mission, reinforcing the foundation for practices like the Eucharist and the new commandment to love one another as a reflection of divine love.

Homilies and Reflections for 4th Sunday of Easter Year B - Good Shepherd Sunday

Sunday April 18, 2027

Allow Jesus to Shepherd You

Jeff Cavins reflects on the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B, drawing from his experiences in Israel watching shepherds with their sheep. He illustrates the unique communication between shepherd and sheep, likening this to Jesus being our Good Shepherd. Cavins emphasizes Jesus' dedication to us, protecting, feeding, and nurturing us, unlike a hireling who flees at danger. He encourages us to be good sheep, responsive to Jesus, and to cherish the relationship with Him, remembering that Jesus, our shepherd, laid down His life for us and will always care for us, urging us to trust in His care and provision.

Getting St. Peter’s Sermon Right

Bishop Robert Barron, in his homily for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B, explores the exclusivity of salvation through Christ, as stated by St. Peter. He challenges listeners to confront the difficulty of this claim without seeking immediate explanations that diminish its impact. Barron emphasizes Jesus' unique role and the decision it demands, distinguishing Christianity from other beliefs. Despite modern inclinations towards inclusivity, he argues that Christianity asserts a unique path to salvation while recognizing truths in other religions as participations in the fullness offered by Christ. He concludes by urging against using St. Peter's words to justify exclusivism or violence, aligning with Vatican II's perspective on salvation's accessibility through Christ's grace, even outside explicit Christian belief.

The Shepherd’s Voice

Scott Hahn reflects on the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B, presenting Jesus as the fulfillment of the prophesied Good Shepherd and shepherd-prince, like a new David, who liberates us from sin's bondage and unites us into one Church under a new covenant. He highlights Jesus' mission to shepherd all peoples, beyond the children of Israel, to the Father. Hahn connects Peter's role, as appointed by Jesus, in beginning this mission through his testimony, emphasizing the Church's ongoing role in shepherding, forgiving sins, and making Christ known. Hahn urges us to recognize our identity as God's children and to be faithful followers, thankful for the blessings we receive.

The Good Shepherd

Brant Pitre delves into the Gospel reading for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B, focusing on Jesus' portrayal as both the Good Shepherd and the gate to salvation. He unpacks the Jewish context of shepherding, highlighting how shepherds uniquely communicate with their sheep, a metaphor for how Jesus calls and leads His followers. Pitre connects this to Old Testament prophecies, particularly from Ezekiel, about bad shepherds versus the true Shepherd who cares for and saves His flock. This passage, Pitre explains, emphasizes Jesus as the fulfillment of these prophecies, offering eternal life and access to God's kingdom through His sacrificial death and resurrection.

The Good Shepherd

In his homily for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B, Bishop Robert Barron highlights Jesus as the fulfillment of the biblical tradition of God shepherding His people, now realized in Jesus Himself. Barron emphasizes two aspects that define Jesus as the Good Shepherd: His willingness to sacrifice His life for His sheep, illustrating an unparalleled love and commitment, and His personal knowledge of each of His sheep, establishing a unique, intimate relationship. This portrayal of Jesus challenges common perceptions of divinity, offering a radical view of God's benevolence and engagement with humanity, urging us to recognize and respond to the voice of our Good Shepherd.

More Thoughts for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B - Good Shepherd Sunday

The Good Shepherd's Sacrifice

The 4th Sunday of Easter Year B invites us to reflect on Jesus Christ's role as the Good Shepherd, a theme beautifully unveiled in the Gospel reading. This imagery is not just a metaphor but a deep revelation of Christ's sacrificial love and commitment towards us. Unlike a hired hand who might flee at the first sign of danger, Jesus stands firm, ready to lay down His life for His sheep. This act of ultimate sacrifice is a testament to the depth of His care and concern for us. It's a love that goes beyond duty or obligation. Jesus wants to be our shepherd, guiding us, protecting us, and leading us to pastures of eternal life.

In today's readings for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B, we are invited to contemplate the nature of this sacrifice. It's a voluntary offering from Jesus, not coerced or done grudgingly but out of a boundless love for humanity. He emphasizes that He lays down His life willingly, with the power to take it up again. This authority and voluntary sacrifice underline the divine mission and the profound love Jesus has for us, highlighting His unique role in God's salvific plan.

The Cornerstone of Salvation

Peter's sermon in the Acts of the Apostles, featured in the first reading for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B, occurs in a context where he's been arrested for his acts of healing and preaching the Good News. His response to the accusations is a powerful testimony to the source of his power and authority: Jesus Christ. Peter boldly declares that the healing of the crippled man and all his works are not of his doing but through the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth. This confession is a stark reminder that Christ is the cornerstone of our faith and salvation, a stone that was rejected by the builders but has become the foundation of our redemption.

Peter's message emphasizes that recognition of Christ's role and power is essential for understanding the works of the faithful in the world. It's a call to recognize Jesus as the source of salvation and the fulcrum around which our faith revolves. This recognition is what the world often misses, as it did not know Him, a theme echoed in the second reading.

Our Identity and Mission as God's Children

The second reading from the 1st Letter of John on the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B delves into our identity as children of God, loved deeply by the Father. This realization of our divine filiation is a source of hope and strength, assuring us of our value in God's eyes. The world may not recognize this identity because it did not know Him, but this does not diminish the truth of our belonging to God and being the recipients of His immense love.

This identity is not just for contemplation but calls us to mission. As children of God, we are called to live out this identity in the world, bearing witness to the love and sacrifice of Jesus, our Good Shepherd. Our mission involves bringing others into this one flock, echoing Jesus' call for unity and inclusivity. It's a mission that requires us to recognize Jesus in our midst, follow His example of sacrifice and love, and invite others to experience the salvation He offers.


The readings for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B collectively challenge us to deeper faith and commitment. They invite us to see Jesus as the Good Shepherd who lays down His life for us, to embrace our identity as God's beloved children, and to live out this identity in a world that desperately needs the message of hope and salvation. In doing so, we become beacons of Christ's light, guiding others to the safety of the one flock under the one shepherd, Jesus Christ.

Reflection Questions for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B - Good Shepherd Sunday

  • Understanding Sacrificial Love: Jesus is portrayed as the Good Shepherd who lays down His life for His sheep. Reflect on a time when you experienced sacrificial love, either by giving or receiving. How did this experience help you understand the depth of Jesus' sacrifice for us?
  • The Cornerstone of Our Faith: Peter declares that salvation comes through Jesus Christ, "the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone." In what ways have you recognized Jesus as the cornerstone of your life? Are there areas where you struggle to trust Him completely?
  • Embracing Our Identity as Children of God: The second reading reminds us that we are God’s children now; what we shall be has not yet been revealed. How does knowing that you are a beloved child of God influence your self-perception and your interactions with others?
  • The Good Shepherd’s Voice: Jesus says, "My sheep hear my voice; I know them, and they follow me." How do you listen for the voice of Jesus in your life? What helps you distinguish His voice from others?
  • Mission and Unity in Diversity: Jesus speaks of other sheep not of this fold that He must bring, emphasizing unity in diversity. How can you contribute to creating a more inclusive and unified community that reflects the universal call of Jesus?
  • Voluntary Sacrifice and Authority: Reflect on the statement, "I lay down my life in order to take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord." How does this demonstrate the power and authority of Jesus? How does it challenge your understanding of power and authority in your own life?
  • The Role of Faith in Recognizing Jesus’ Works: Peter's healing of the crippled man and his bold proclamation of Jesus as the source of his power were not recognized by all. In what ways does faith help you recognize and appreciate the works of God in your life and in the world around you?
  • The World’s Knowledge of Us: "The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know Him." How does this reality impact the way you live out your faith in everyday life? How can you be a witness to Christ in a world that may not recognize or understand your identity as a child of God?

Quotes and Social Media Graphics for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B - Good Shepherd Sunday

If you use the images below in any form, you must provide attribution to young-catholics.com. See details.

i know mine
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I am the good shepherd, says the Lord. I know my sheep and mine know me. - John 10:14
4th Sunday of Easter Year B Good Shepherd
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Jesus the Good Shepherd - 4th Sunday of Easter Year B

Music Suggestions for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B - Good Shepherd Sunday

Sunday April 18, 2027

For the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B, the selection of contemporary music and traditional hymns echoes the readings’ themes, focusing on the imagery of Christ as the Good Shepherd, the encompassing love of God, and the call to discipleship and community. The music for this Sunday invites congregations to engage with God's care, guidance, and unfailing love, encouraging a response of gratitude, trust, and love from deep within the hearts of the faithful.

These music suggestions for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B beautifully encapsulate the essence of the scriptural themes, offering a mix of jubilation, contemplation, and profound devotion. With a focus on the pastoral care of Christ, the embodiment of divine love, and the journey of faith, these pieces serve as a call to reflection and celebration. This collection invites worshippers to immerse themselves in the celebration of God's eternal love and guiding hand, nurturing a spirit of unity and faithfulness in the journey of discipleship.

Frequently Asked Questions for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B - Good Shepherd Sunday

What date is the the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B - Good Shepherd Sunday?

The next date is Sunday April 18, 2027.
For other years see the links below:
4th Sunday of Easter Year A: Sunday April 26, 2026
4th Sunday of Easter Year C: Sunday May 11, 2025

What are the Mass readings for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B - Good Shepherd Sunday?

The Catholic Mass readings for Sunday April 18, 2027 are:
First Reading - Acts 4:8-12: Salvation Through Jesus Alone
Responsorial Psalm - Psalm 118: Cornerstone of Faith
Second Reading - 1 John 3:1-2: Children of God Now and Forever
Gospel - John 10:11-18: The Good Shepherd

What is the significance of the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B being called "Good Shepherd Sunday"?

The 4th Sunday of Easter Year B is called "Good Shepherd Sunday" because the Gospel reading features Jesus describing Himself as the Good Shepherd. This imagery highlights His role in guiding, protecting, and sacrificing for His flock, emphasizing His care and commitment to all who follow Him.

How does the first reading from Acts relate to the theme of the Good Shepherd on the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B?

In the first reading for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B, Peter speaks about Jesus Christ of Nazareth's role in salvation, pointing to Him as the cornerstone rejected by the builders. This connects to the Good Shepherd theme by underscoring Jesus' authority and the foundational role He plays in our salvation, similar to how a shepherd is vital for the safety and well-being of his sheep.

What message does the second reading convey to believers on the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B?

The second reading for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B communicates a profound message about our identity as children of God, deeply loved by the Father. It reminds believers of their divine filiation and the promise of becoming fully like Him in the future, reinforcing the idea that our ultimate identity and destiny are found in God.

How can I apply the message of the Good Shepherd in my daily life, as reflected in the readings for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B?

To apply the message of the Good Shepherd in daily life, consider ways to listen more attentively to Jesus’ voice through prayer, Scripture reading, and participating in community worship. Reflect on how you can emulate His sacrificial love and care for others in your actions and decisions. Seek ways to foster unity and inclusivity in your community, mirroring the Good Shepherd’s call for one flock under one shepherd.

Why does Jesus emphasize that He lays down His life voluntarily in the Gospel reading for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B?

Jesus emphasizes His voluntary sacrifice in the Gospel reading for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B to highlight His authority and obedience to the Father’s will, and His deep love for His sheep. This voluntary nature of His sacrifice underscores the profound love and commitment Jesus has for us, ensuring that we understand it was not taken from Him, but freely given for our salvation.

What does Peter mean when he says, "There is no salvation through anyone else" in the first reading for the 4th Sunday of Easter Year B?

When Peter declares, "There is no salvation through anyone else," he is affirming the unique and pivotal role of Jesus Christ as the sole source of salvation for humanity. This statement emphasizes the belief that Jesus is the cornerstone of our faith, and through His life, death, and resurrection, He has opened the way to eternal life for all who believe in Him.

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