Celebrate Priesthood Sunday
Priesthood Sunday, is a special day set aside to honor the priesthood in the United States. It is a day to reflect upon and affirm the role of priesthood in the life of the Church. In the wake of the sexual abuse scandal, there has been concern that the image of all priests has been tainted by the actions of a few. Priesthood Sunday sends a message to all that the sins of a few do not reflect the innocent majority, and that the parish priest, as the instrument of Christ’s ministry on earth, is loved and respected by those in the parish community. This nation-wide event is coordinated by the USA Council of Serra International (www. serraus.org).
On Priesthood Sunday, the lay faithful are invited to pray especially for the priests of their parish as well as for priests in general. The United States continues to need men who find themselves drawn to service in God’s kingdom to open themselves up to the possibility of serving the Lord as a priest. Therefore, pray for those men who God is calling to service in the Church as a priest are also encouraged. For more information on vocations to the priesthood and religious life go to www.houstonvocations.org.
Please pray on this special day, Priesthood Sunday, for our priests, in praise to God for their courage and their generosity. Please make your appreciation for your parish priest known. A simple note, card, smile, offer a spiritual bouquet (the offering of rosaries, masses or Holy Hours),
or a phone call to assure him of your loving care and gratitude for his presence in the life of your church will go a long way to serve the greater good of our wonderful and growing Catholic Church.
"The reasons for this celebration (of Priesthood Sunday) should be obvious. The number of priests per Catholic has declined over the past 40 years. This makes it more difficult for individual parishioners to establish a close relationship with any one particular priest. When I was growing up, our pastor served in our parish for 34 years. My mom and dad knew him well. His presence and service were significant factors in the story of my own vocation. Furthermore, priests are no longer the only ones who offer pastoral care to our people. Yet without a priest, no parish is able to be a Eucharistic community. It is important to reaffirm the importance of the priesthood of Jesus Christ and its central place in the life of our Church."
-Archbishop John G. Vlazny, Archdiocese of Portland