Friday, 17 December 2010

A prayer for faithless priests

It is easy to forget that priests battle often with belief, feel isolated, neglected, picked upon by their Bishop, distanced from their family, the subject of parochial tittle tattle or they harbour demons such as alcoholism, paedophilia and so on. As a result, they may lose their faith but they should always be in our prayers

For renegade priests, who need our prayers

“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”.

E. Boyd Barrett c. 1956

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