Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Novena for our Priests and Bishops in Ireland - Day 6

We pray today for those Priests who have left the Priesthood, those who are in error and those who challenge and who disobey the teachings and authority of the Church and for those Bishops who ignore the teachings of the Church and who remain silent in the face of sin and error.

Section of Pope Benedict XVI (now Emeritus) homily from Chrism Mass 2012

After this homily, I shall be addressing that question to each of you here and to myself as well. Two things, above all, are asked of us: there is a need for an interior bond, a configuration to Christ, and at the same time there has to be a transcending of ourselves, a renunciation of what is simply our own, of the much-vaunted self-fulfilment. We need, I need, not to claim my life as my own, but to place it at the disposal of another – of Christ. I should be asking not what I stand to gain, but what I can give for him and so for others. Or to put it more specifically, this configuration to Christ, who came not to be served but to serve, who does not take, but rather gives – what form does it take in the often dramatic situation of the Church today? 

Recently a group of priests from a European country issued a summons to disobedience, and at the same time gave concrete examples of the forms this disobedience might take, even to the point of disregarding definitive decisions of the Church’s Magisterium, such as the question of women’s ordination, for which Blessed Pope John Paul II stated irrevocably that the Church has received no authority from the Lord. Is disobedience a path of renewal for the Church? We would like to believe that the authors of this summons are motivated by concern for the Church, that they are convinced that the slow pace of institutions has to be overcome by drastic measures, in order to open up new paths and to bring the Church up to date. But is disobedience really a way to do this? Do we sense here anything of that configuration to Christ which is the precondition for all true renewal, or do we merely sense a desperate push to do something to change the Church in accordance with one’s own preferences and ideas?

But let us not oversimplify matters. Surely Christ himself corrected human traditions which threatened to stifle the word and the will of God? Indeed he did, so as to rekindle obedience to the true will of God, to his ever enduring word. His concern was for true obedience, as opposed to human caprice. Nor must we forget: he was the Son, possessed of singular authority and responsibility to reveal the authentic will of God, so as to open up the path for God’s word to the world of the nations. And finally: he lived out his task with obedience and humility all the way to the Cross, and so gave credibility to his mission. Not my will, but thine be done: these words reveal to us the Son, in his humility and his divinity, and they show us the true path

Prayer for Priests Who Have Gone Astray

Lord Jesus Christ,
as you gazed down from the Cross in Your bitter agony upon the beloved and faithful Apostle, St. John, Your anguish was increased by the desertion of the traitor and the other Apostles. In spite of this desertion Your love embraced them and all those consecrated men who would forsake You.  We, therefore confidently beseech You now to rain abundant grace on shepherds who have gone astray.

Where there is present groping uncertainty, let there be light; Where there is present overshadowing gloom, let there be joy; Where there is present mounting struggle, let there be peace.

Guide, O Lord, the straying shepherds back to the fold, and assist them to walk surely and lovingly in Your sight, for only in union with You will the shepherd find true light, joy and peace.

Give to all priests inspiration in time of doubt, patience in time of adversity, fortitude in time of weakness, that with Your love ever pressing them on, they may lead others ever closer to You.

Pray the Chaplet of Mercy reflecting on the Sufferings of Christ for these Priests and please add other prayers as you wish.  

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please be respectful in your comments. Thank you.