Year of the Priest

Obviously, this is going to be the Best Year Ever!!!! 🙂

I am so excited and my heart is so full of squee! 🙂 I have been doing the happy dance in anticipation of this day, this year, since I first heard about it. I cannot wait to see all of the great things which are going to come out.

We have heard so many awful things about our priests, so much doubt and venom, all aimed at tearing them down. After the Fr. Cutié incident, I heard many people either stating that celibacy was an antiquated and unnecessary practice, or that it didn’t really matter that he decided to leave the Catholic church, among other things. My purpose in writing this is not really to debate that issue, although I could, but rather to focus on what is important.

Sure, there are going to be times when this priest or that priest is in the news. Sure, some of them are actually going to have done something scandalous. Not all of them. Their lives have a level of scrutiny most of us do not have to deal with. I would pray that if we come across something, that our reaction not first be offense or judgment, but love. Don’t condemn these people, pray for them!

Our society revels in tearing people down. It loves to show everyone else as being corrupt and dirty. Instead, we should be building people up. We should recognise that they fall, yes, but instead of rubbing their face in it, causing them shame and making a spectacle, we should be there to stretch out our hands and help them back to their feet. We are all in this race together, and the point is to make it home. We all stumble and we all fall.

I live with the conviction that our priests are good men. These are our beloved brothers. They, as so recently pointed out, have chosen to give their lives in service to us. They have chosen to be ontologically conformed to a man who was nailed to a cross — for us. If we find it heroic that a person, in a moment of crisis will give his life for another person, what about a person who routinely, every day, gives his life for another person? And, usually, without notice or thanks.

We need to support these men. We need to be behind them. No one operates in a vacuum. We are the body of Christ. All the cells of the body work fundamentally on an osmotic or diffusionary principle. Where there is great abundance of a substance, it goes to the area of the greatest need for that substance. You get sick when there is a disruption in this mechanism. The body of Christ needs to work the same way. Whatever abundance you have, you should be seeking to distribute that abundance to the place where it is most needed. A healthy body lives in continual interchange between all the different cells. So, too, does a healthy society need to have a continual interchange. There is always something that you have to offer, and there is always something which you need to receive from someone else. Perfection is not a static condition, but a continually changing state — always rebalancing. This is how we grow and adapt — and thrive.

[To be continued/edited…]

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