HomePhilippiniana Sacravol. 45 no. 135 (2010)

Towards A “Shepherd” Spirituality: The Application of the Image of Sheep-and-Shepherd in Psalm 23 to Seminary Formation in the Philippines

Erwin Blasa | Clarence Marquez



The shepherd image was widely used in the life of the Israelites and in the Bible, especially in Psalm 23. Having reached its perfection in the person of Jesus Christ, the shepherd image has been indispensably used by the Church, especially in reference to the present ministerial priesthood. The reading of Psalm 23’s image of sheep-and-shepherd in the light of the Church Magisterium provides a fundamental significance to seminary formation. Drawing a shepherd theology of Psalm 23 in order to enhance the present context of Philippine priestly training will hopefully lead to the emergence of a shepherd spirituality. With the concept of self-giving, which is central in the character of the Good Shepherd and is an essential content of Christ’s pastoral charity, the image of sheep-and-shepherd becomes a powerful source and principle of unity in the spiritual life of seminarians and in their whole formation. This imagery may then serve as a good inspiration in cultivating the spirituality and formation of seminarians, who are the future shepherds of the Philippine Local Church.