Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Holy Tuesday: The Hearts of Our Priests

This morning the priests of the Archdiocese gathered to renew the priestly promises at the annual Chrism Mass.  It is always edifying to see all of our priests together in one place particularly in our cathedral celebrating with our archbishop.  So this post doesn't sound self-indulgent, I'll let Archbishop Wenski do the talking:
As Jesus’ heart was moved with pity for the troubled and the abandoned, those who seem like sheep without a shepherd, so too is a priest’s heart moved.  Pastoral charity – and not the desire for fame or fortune – should motivate the priest in his ministry. As Pope Francis reminds us the priestly anointing we received was not just meant to make us fragrant; rather, it is meant “for the poor, the prisoners, the sick, for those sorrowing and alone.” Thus, a priest is to “cure the sick”; that is, to attend to the ill and the injured, healing their isolation with a visit and bringing courage to those who are weak; a priest is to raise the dead, that is, to restore hope to those deadened by discouragement and defeat; a priest is to cleanse lepers, that is, to befriend the outsider, to extend the hand of friendship to the marginalized and rejected; a priest is to drive out demons, by helping people deal with the various addictions that affect and by not failing to address any personal demons that may threaten the integrity of his commitment.
As Pope Saint John Paul II said: People today look to priests for the “lived word” before they look to him for the “proclaimed” word. The priest must “live by the word.”   Today, we recommit ourselves to “live by the word”.