May 5 2019 : 3rd Sunday of Easter
The connection between today’s Gospel (John 21:1-19) and this antiphon scarcely needs pointing out. We like lambs are fed by the Lord in Communion, while also having in our minds echoes of the Lamb that was worthy to be slain in today’s 2nd Reading (Rev 5:11-14).
The psalm verses, extracted from Psalm 78, also take up other parts of the Gospel passage and the Easter season as a whole: reminiscences of the Red Sea crossing chime with the disciples fishing on the Sea of Tiberias, manna and other foods in the desert chime with the Lord giving the disciples breakfast by the sea, while the final stanza selected — “God brought forth the people like sheep; / guided them like a flock in the desert; / led them safely with nothing to fear, / while the sea engulfed their foes.” — ties all these threads together. We, too, are led safely with nothing to fear, if we place our trust in the Lord. Alleluia!
The antiphon text is adapted from the one set each year for the solemnity of Ss Peter and Paul, which this year occurs on Sunday June 30 .