Thursday, 4 August 2011

On this special day for priests - a prayer with a difference

Today is the feast of the patron saint of all priests, the Cure of Ars, St John Vianney. H/T to Ros at Shadowlands who reminded me of this prayer with her post.

The following is a prayer for priests, not all priests, just renegade ones. They may be renegade for any number of reasons and the word itself, in this case, just means a priest at odds with his vocation. He may have problems of chastity, obedience, poverty - whatever the problem, this prayer is for those men and one in particular who need not be named:-

“I have no chapel; no altar at which to offer the holiest sacrifice; no pulpit from which to preach. There is no confessional where penitents await counsel and absolution from my lips; no baptismal font where, by the sacrament of regeneration, I may give to the Eternal Father another child. I am a priest, Christ’s shepherd, but I have no sheep.
But though I have no sheep, the Prince of shepherds is my friend. He needs me; He is my divine companion. It is His will that I should be as I am. “Christ is in me” and, for me, that is enough.
There are others like me and, in every country throughout the world, “silenced priests” living hidden lives; hidden from the world; hidden, as far as may be, in Christ.  Some are my good friends……..
Prayers going up to heaven, in ever increasing volume for faithless priests are wondrously fruitful. Many “stray shepherds” heed the call of Christ, who searches for them in the mist. When they see Him again their hearts are moved and they come back.
Then, there occurs what Luke () mystically foretold “The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God”.


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