Thursday, October 29, 2009

Bishop William L. Higi: Year for Priests

"While certain aspects of the Year for Priests focuses on affirmation of priests and their ministry, it is not an observance meant to exalt priests. Rather, it is a call for the sanctification of priests.

"Sanctification means the process through which a believer responds to grace and is brought closer to God. While affirmation, support and expressions of gratitude for the ministry of priests is always uplifting to men who so often feel the sting of criticism, anger and/or unmet expectations, the idea is for priests to nurture their vocation in an intensified way during the Year for Priests...

"Most people have no idea what a day in the life of a priest is like. Few apparently stop to reflect that when decisions are made, some will agree, while others will disagree. In a culture that promulgates the idea that protest is the way to get one's way, things can become heated. Some of us whom God has called to the priesthood are better at meeting the expectations of people than others.

"Then, too, time for prayer is crucial if balance is to be maintained. Finding that all important time can be a challenge. A priest cannot be in two places at once.

"...he needs the understanding of the people he has been called to serve. Part of that understanding is acceptance of our limitations and idiosyncrasies. The other part is awareness that like the non-ordained, we struggle to grow in holiness."

Bishop William L. Higi, bishop of the Diocese of Lafayette-in-Indiana, concludes the article from which the above excerpts were taken with a request for this daily prayer for priests.

Mary, Mother of Jesus Christ, Eternal High priest, Mother of all priests, and our Mother, help us respond generously to the Holy Spirit's request, through the voice of His Church, to offer up to God Eucharistic adoration for priests. Amen.

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