Friday, July 09, 2010

Priests must not use vocation as social stepping stone, cautions Benedict XVI :: Catholic News Agency (CNA)

Priests must not use vocation as social stepping stone, cautions Benedict XVI :: Catholic News Agency (CNA)

Vatican City, Jun 21, 2010 / 12:59 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- During Pope Benedict's homily for the ordination of 14 priests on Sunday for the Diocese of Rome, he emphasized that the vocation of the priesthood, must not be viewed as a way to achieve social status in life, but rather as a way to “rediscover the ever-new face” of Christ.

In his homily for the ordination, which took place Sunday morning in St. Peter's Basilica, the Holy Father cautioned that the priesthood “must never represent a way to achieve security in life or to attain social position”

“Anyone who aspires to the priesthood in order to increase his personal prestige and power has radically misunderstood the significance of this ministry,” explained the Pope.

He noted that if a priest's main goal is to “achieve success,” he will say “what people want to hear” and “adapt to changing fashions and opinions.”

“In this way, he will deprive himself of the vital relationship with truth, reducing himself to condemning tomorrow what he praises today,” Benedict XVI warned.

"A priest who sees his ministry in these terms,” he continued, does not truly love God and neighbor, he loves only himself and, paradoxically, ends up by losing himself.” The vocation of the priesthood “is founded on the courage to say yes to another will, with the daily-growing awareness that” by “conforming ourselves to the will of God ... we increasingly enter into the truth of our being and our ministry.”

Pope Benedict also encouraged the priests to “rediscover the ever-new face” of Christ through prayer.

“Only one who has an intimate relationship with the Lord can be seized by Him, can bring Him to others, can become His envoy. This involves a kind of 'remaining with Him' which must always accompany, and be the core of, priestly ministry, also and above all during moments of difficulty when it seems that 'the things to be done' must take priority.

“Wherever we are, whatever we do, we must always 'remain with Him'."

The Pontiff drew his homily to a close by asking God to give the priests the grace “to be able to live this ministry coherently and generously, everyday."

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Anonymous said...

Father, you can see the difference between a holy priest who loves God, the Church and his parishioners and an ecclesiastical bureaucrat who loves power and influence over others, especially his peers. Watch how each priest celebrates the Holy Mass. The genuine humility is evident in the reverence of one while the other draws attention to himself and makes the Sacred Liturgy a show rather than an act of Divine Worship.

Unknown said...

"thou hast said it"

As Fr Fred Miller, Professor of Theology at Mount St Mary Seminary often says, "it is not ME-ology, it is about God, hence, the term THEO-logy."

Laura Berry said...

So true!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 11:18, as Padre Giovanni said, you certainly have said it. We recently got a new pastor in our parish who is one that is God-centered, replacing one that was me-centered. What a difference!


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