On the Catholic Priesthood

Thursday September 27, 2018


"Charity means speaking the truth, I have encountered it (not speaking the truth) many times myself as a priest and bishop. It is something we simple need to address. There is far too much silence - people do not want to talk about it because the topic is not "politically correct". But we cannot be silent any longer."

Source: Cardinal Raymond Burke

Wednesday September 26, 2018


O most loving Jesus, who deignest to trust Thyself daily to the hands of priests, I adore Thee with the utmost reverence; I deplore all the irreverences committed by priests, and I most ardently desire that Thou mayest be loved by all men in the Sacrament of Thy love.

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory.

Source: Daily Exercise of Reparation p11 (League Devotions and Choral Services with hymns: For the Apostleship of Prayer, League of the Sacred Heart 1895)

Tuesday September 25, 2018

Prayer for the Clergy

O God, who willest that Thy priests should be holy and without blemish before Thee; grant unto those whom Thou hast separated from among men in order to serve Thee at Thy holy altar, all sacerdotal virtues. So engrave the priestly character in the souls of those who are about to be admitted to the Sacred Order of Priesthood, that they may never in any way degenerate from their high vocation, but serve Thee in all holiness. Amen.

Source: Apostleship of Prayer, League of the Sacred Heart

Friday September 21, 2018

Seven Penitential Psalms

There are few prayers so capable of disarming the justice of God, as the Penitential Psalms.
We should endeavor to enter into the sentiments of compunction, love, devotion, admiration,
and confidence, with which the Royal Prophet was penetrated when he composed them.
He often speaks of the enemies who persecuted him, and these expressions may readily
be applied to the devil and sin.

Source: St. Vincent’s Manual, 1856

Thursday September 20, 2018

Haerent Animo, Apostolic Exhortation

"It is his duty to uproot unfruitful plants and to sow useful ones, to water the crop and to guard lest the enemy sow cockle among it. Consequently, the priest must be careful not to allow an unbalanced concern for personal perfection to lead him to overlook any part of the duties of his office which are conducive to the welfare of others. These duties include the preaching of the word of God, the hearing of confessions, assisting the sick, especially the dying, the instruction of those who are ignorant of the faith, the consolation of the sorrowing, leading back the erring, in a word, the imitation in every respect of Christ who went about doing good and healing all that were oppressed by the devil."

Pope St. Pius X

Wednesday September 19, 2018

Ember Day: Litany to Obtain Holy Priests

Lord, have mercy
Christ, have mercy
Lord, have mercy
Christ, hear us
Christ, Graciously hear us

God, Our Heavenly Father, have mercy on us
God the Son, Redeemer of the world,
have mercy on us
God, The Holy Ghost, have mercy on us
Holy Trinity, Three Persons in one God,
have mercy on us

Lord, obtain for us priests
Lord, obtain for us holy priests
and make us docile to their teachings

Holy Mary, Queen of the Clergy,
obtain for us holy priests
Saint Joseph, Patron of the Church,
obtain for us holy priests
Saint Michael, splendor and protector of the Church militant, obtain for us holy priests

All you holy Saints and Archangels,
obtain for us holy priests
All you holy Patriarchs and Prophets,
obtain for us holy priests
All you holy Martyrs and Virgins,
obtain for us holy priests
All you holy Bishops and Confessors,
obtain for us holy priests
All you holy Priests and Doctors,
obtain for us holy priests
All you holy Founders of religious orders,
obtain for us holy priests

St. Anthony of Padua, defender of the Holy Eucharist, obtain for us holy priests
St. John-Mary Vianney, model of sacerdotal holiness, obtain for us holy priests
St. Francis Xavier, patron of missionary priests, obtain for us holy priests
St. Therese of the Child-Jesus and of the Holy Face, victim offered for the sanctification of priests, obtain for us holy priests
Saints and Servants of God, obtain for us holy priests.

To celebrate with reverence the Holy Mysteries,
obtain for us holy priests
To offer every day the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass,
obtain for us holy priests
To feed the people of God with the Bread of life,
obtain for us holy priests
To promote the splendors of the Divine Worship,
obtain for us holy priests
To regenerate souls through baptism,
obtain for us holy priests
To instruct the faithful in the Holy Faith,
obtain for us holy priests
To keep the faithful in the fear of the Lord,
obtain for us holy priests
To announce to all the Word of God,
obtain for us holy priests
To unmask and combat false doctrines,
obtain for us holy priests
To fortify the Faith of those who doubt,
obtain for us holy priests
To support and encourage those who fail,
obtain for us holy priests
To raise up those who fall and to reconcile them to God,obtain for us holy priests
To bring back to God those who rejected Him, obtain for us holy priests
To protect christian morality,
obtain for us holy priests

To fight with zeal the corruption of morality,
obtain for us holy priests
To bless holy unions, obtain for us holy priests
To defend the honor and sanctity of marriage,
obtain for us holy priests
To strengthen the happiness of our christian families, obtain for us holy priests
To fortity and console our sicks and those who suffer, obtain for us holy priests
To assist our dying ones, obtain for us holy priests
To lead our dead to eternal happiness,
obtain for us holy priests
To pray and offer the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass for our dead, obtain for us holy priests
To give glory to God, and to give grace and peace to souls of good will, obtain for us holy priests.

Lamb of God, Who take away the sins of the world, spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who take away the sins of the world, graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.

The Lord chose for Himself priests so that them will offer Him a worthy thanksgiving.

Let us pray.

God Almighty and merciful, favorably grant the prayers of Your faithful and grant to those whom You have given the immense generosity of your clemency, to be elevated to the service of the heavenly mysteries, to become worthy ministers at Your sacred altars, so that their teachings be confirmed by your sanctification. Through Our Lord Jesus-Christ, Amen.

Saturday September 15, 2018

Our Lady Mother of Sorrows

Our Lady, Mother of Sorrows pray for Priests, your special sons. Strengthen their faith and love of Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament, so that they may turn to Him for the grace they need to live a life faithful to their calling. Bring comfort, consolation and courage to those who are suffering under the weight of the Cross. Give them the love of your Son and zeal for the honor and glory of God, and the salvation of souls. Amen

Thursday September 13, 2018

A priest is one who makes Christ visible

"A priest is one who makes Christ visible. The people see Christ in the saintly priests and they seek even to touch his robes as they did the robes of Christ. Children come to him without fear; non-Catholics give to them a reverence which they rarely give to others. The sure measure by which a priest draws souls to Christ is also the means by which he can drive souls from Christ."

Sources: Bishop Sheen, Those Mysterious Priests

Wednesday September 12, 2018

Abuse and Priesthood

 Fr. Ripperger on the Abuse crisis and the Priesthood

Source: Fr. Ripperger

Monday September 10, 2018

St. Paul, the Priest

In short, the reward of the priest’s labors will be in due proportion to the motives that urged his action.  If he seeks “the things which are his own” his reward will be an earthly one.  If he seeks “the things that are Christ’s” his reward will be an eternal one.  Again, if his motive be a selfish one, the results of his labors in the care of souls will be negligible, because the grace of God can be but scantily with him, but working with the motive of the love of God great results may be expected, because the grace of God will amply accompany his efforts.  For, with St. Paul, the priest who loves God sincerely may say:  “I can do all things in him who strengtheneth me” (Phil., iv, 13).  “For it is God who worketh in you (the faithful) both to will and to accomplish, according to his good will” (Phil., ii, 13).

Source: By Rev. Albert Rung: St. Paul, the Priest (The Homiletic Monthly and Pastoral Review) Vol. XXI Jan. 1921 No.4

(Special thanks to Bob Olson)

Sunday September 09, 2018

A Well Trained Priest

"One well trained priest is worth more than many trained badly or scarcely at all. For such would be not merely unreliable but a likely source of sorrow to the Church. What a terrifying account, Venerable Brethren, We shall have to give to the Prince of Shepherds, to the Supreme Bishop of souls, if we have handed over these souls to incompetent guides and incapable leaders."

Source: Pius XI (Ad Catholici Sacerdotti: Encyclical of Pope Pius XI on the Catholic Priesthood. 1935)

Saturday September 08, 2018

The Priest as one Chosen from among Men

"We recognize the priest as one chosen from among men to serve men in the affairs of God. He is the minister of reconciliation with God, the teacher of the truth, and one who offers the sacrifice, who administers the sacraments, who prays for the people. We distinguish in him that double character of man and priest; we recognize the divine character of the priesthood which forces us to bend the knee to him for the forgiveness of sins and to receive from his hands the holy sacrifice of the Eucharist. His ordination has conferred upon the man the character of the priesthood of Jesus Christ. In the parish he is the ambassador of God, the administrator of the sacraments, the guardian of the sacred deposit of faith, the defender of the people's rights, and the unselfish friend of everyone. From the cradle to the grave, he touches intimately the lives of his people and brings to them in all the circumstances of life the blessing of the Divine Savior of whom he is the commissioned minister. The people feel that in the true priest there is no taint of selfishness, and that he is willing to sacrifice his life in order that the spiritual interests of his people may not suffer "

Source: Bishop James Conaty, Our Young People, 1912

Friday September 07, 2018

The Bishop

"The blessed Apostle Paul, wishing to describe the ideal Bishop and to form by his teachings a completely new man of the Church, explained what was, so to speak, his highest perfection. He stated that a Bishop must profess sure doctrine, in accordance with what has been taught, and thus be able to exhort others to sound doctrine and to refute those who contradict it."

Source: Saint Hilairy de Poitiers (De Trinitate)

Thursday September 06, 2018

The Words of the Priest

"At that hour of the Sacrifice, at the words of the Priest, the heavens are opened, and in that mystery of Jesus Christ, the choirs of Angels are present, and things below are joined to things on high, earthly things to heavenly, and the service is both a visible and an invisible event."

Source: St. Gregory the Great

Wednesday September 05, 2018

On the Church and the Age

"Let us strengthen our devotion to the Church. Let us love our holy mother the Church; we owe everything to the Church. Let us not fear that the words of Christʼs promise shall ever fail. The gates of hell have never prevailed, and never shall prevail, against His Church. She has never gone astray on a single doctrinal point: her enemies may be challenged to prove that she has ever erred in any point of practical justice or prudence.Her children may have done wrong; but the Bride of Christ has preserved unstained during nineteen centuries that white robe which He gave to her that she might be " a glorious Church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing." She has never been unfaithful to His truth or to His cause, and, by the virtue of His power, she will purify again this earth, on which it is her lot to lead a life of ever-varying trial and combat. Let us ask to be made worthy children of that Church militant and struggling, in order that, having done our part of duty in her warfare with the world, we may merit to be enrolled among the glorious members of a Church which is triumphing in heaven."

Source: On the Church and the Age, Fr. Merrick (Catholic Oratory, A compilation of Sacred and Sublime Orations, 1891)