By Michael Seagriff
|Ordination of a Priest, 15th century engraving|
(photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
Blessed John Paul II gave the Church many beautiful gifts; among them were the Year of the Rosary (2002-2003) and the Year of the Eucharist (2004-2005). In doing so, he encouraged priests, religious and laity to use these gifts and harness the spiritual power and strength that flows from them. Both he and his successor have urged their priests to make the Eucharist the source, center and summit of their priestly lives and to fully embrace and live their unique vocation as "another Christ."
During the Year for the Priest (2009-2010) Pope Benedict XVI held St. John Marie Vianney up as the model for all priests because the Cure of Ars accepted the cross, was full of zeal for the salvation of souls, was an ardent Adorer of the Blessed Sacrament, was greatly devoted to our Blessed Mother, a lover of sinners who spent hours daily reconciling them with their merciful God, a model of purity, humble in all things, lover of penance and mortification, and a good and holy priest.
Not a single priest should be hesitant to imitate this great priest and saint! There have always been John Vianneys in our midst. Thankfully, more priests are responding positively and wholeheartedly to the Holy Father’s challenge. We are beginning to experience the fruits of their faithful embrace of that call! While we certainly need more priests, we first need holy priests whose Christ-like example will attract other men to the priesthood they love.
Continue reading at Micheal's blog Harvesting the Fruits of Contemplation.