It’s easy to blame leaders, and we do it all the time. World leaders are speaking at the UN this week and some are easy targets. Anyone running for office in our country can expect a withering scrutiny. Church leaders aren’t immune either.
St. Augustine in our liturgy recently has a sermon on the Good Shepherd in which he warns church leaders not to lead the sheep astray but to be like Jesus. When they are like him they are “in the one Shepherd, and in that sense they are not many but one. When they feed the sheep it is Christ who is doing the feeding.”
So pray for good leaders for our church, Augustine says: “May it never happen that we truly lack good shepherds! May it never happen to us! May God’s loving kindness never fail to provide them!”
But the saint goes on to say we must do more than pray, we ourselves must be “good sheep,” because “if there are good sheep then it follows that there are good shepherds, since a good sheep will naturally make a good shepherd.”
Is that something to applies to us as citizens of the USA? Are the leaders we blame mirrors of ourselves? Are we getting the leaders we deserve? Add to a prayer for good leaders, a prayer for good citizens. God make us good citizens, and good leaders will come.