What is the priesthood?

"The Priesthood is the heart of the love of Jesus"

St. John Marie Vianney

"Through the sacrament of Holy Orders priests share in the universal dimensions of the mission that Christ entrusted to the apostles. the spiritual gift they have received in ordination prepares them, not for a limited and restricted mission, "but for the fullest, in fact the universal mission of salvation 'to the end of the earth,"' "prepared in spirit to preach the Gospel everywhere." 

"It is in the Eucharistic cult or in the Eucharistic assembly of the faithful (synaxis) that they exercise in a supreme degree their sacred office; there, acting in the person of Christ and proclaiming his mystery, they unite the votive offerings of the faithful to the sacrifice of Christ their head, and in the sacrifice of the Mass they make present again and apply, until the coming of the Lord, the unique sacrifice of the New Testament, that namely of Christ offering himself once for all a spotless victim to the Father."  From this unique sacrifice their whole priestly ministry draws its strength."  (CCC 1565-1566)

The model of all parish priests - Saint John Marie Vianney

  "Show me the way to Ars, and I will show you the way to heaven"

"Show me the way to Ars, and I will show you the way to heaven"


A priest is a man of prayer

A man called to the priesthood must be rooted in a life of prayer.  Each day in the life of a priest is centered on prayer.  Offering the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, praying the Divine Office, contemplation of Sacred Scripture, and a Holy Hour in front of the Blessed Sacrament are all part of the life of prayer necessary in the life of a priest. 

A priest is a man of service

Ordained in the person of Jesus Christ the head, a priest must then act in the person of Christ the head.  At the Last Supper, Jesus washed the feet of the apostles.  Jesus came to serve, not to be served.  A priest is the servant of God, ordered to serve God's people at all times, in Word and Sacrament.

A priest is a man of sacrifice

A priest is ordained to offer sacrifice, primarily at the Altar.  A man called to priesthood should be one who understands sacrifice and lives that out everyday.  Self giving, generous, and humble of heart should define a man of sacrifice.   

A priest is a man of mission

A priest is sent to preach the Gospel, in and out of season.  A priest is sent to baptize all nations, in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.  A priest is a man called to go out to the peripheries of society and to walk with the people of God.  Each man called to priesthood should have a zeal of mission in their heart.