Pointing at the bulletin letter's date (link) at left will display it's title.
May 14, 2006
A Call to HolinessWhen we are young or inexperienced in life we may believe that a Priest is a priest, is a priest. Except for some minor personality differences they should all be alike. When we grow older, more experienced and a bit wiser, we come to realize that there are priests, and then there are priests. Why is that? There are many and complex reason for this but perhaps we can take a few minutes to reflect on the calling of a priest.
First and foremost, a priest is a human being just like everyone else. He is born into a family and develops his personality, his values and virtues largely on the examples of his parents and extended family. As adults, some men decide to become a priest for the wrong reasons. This is similar to couples who marry for the wrong reasons. They end result is that they are unhappy in their chosen state of life. And, as we know, when we are unhappy, everyone else around us becomes unhappy. Making the wrong choice for our state of life makes it extremely difficult to respond to the call of holiness to which we are all invited.
Still others make the right choice. They feel called to a certain state of life, in this case, the priesthood, and respond willingly. As time goes on however, the road often becomes rocky and difficult. There are few road signs for guidance along the way. Life is not as “romantic” as it originally promised to be. Like couples facing difficult situations through life, people forgot that the call to holiness is a daily response. Discouragement sets in and depression ensues.
And then, there are priests. This is the person that everyone wants as their pastor. This is a man who has willingly answered the call to personal holiness. He has understood that life is not always easy and certainly not “romantic”. A man who has chosen wisely based on his talents and gifts, given to him by God, is happy in his vocation. Thus, the people he serves are equally happy.
A happy priest is a holy priest. A man is not born holy. He becomes holy as he responds daily to the invitation to intimacy with his God. The degree of intimacy deepens over a lifetime. It does not happen all at once. The road is not always easy. It is not always a joy ride. It has its bumps and curves, even serious ruts. However, the priest growing in holiness is happy. He lives his life in relationship with Christ and responds to life with the grace of the Holy Spirit. With God’s help, he remains faithful to his call.
As a result of the growing intimacy with God, a priest is able to serve the people of God. He is a man who understands the human condition, is willing to accept adversity, and knows the meaning of the word sacrifice. He celebrates the joy of God’s people, is able to feel their pain and is willing to walk the road of sorrow with them.
This coming Monday, May 15th, our pastor is celebrating his 35th anniversary of ordination. It is clear that our parish has been blessed with a priest that has chosen the right path. He has also been faithful to God’s invitation to holiness. As God’s people, we must not forget that we are all in this together. The priest is human as we are. He needs us as much as we need him. Let us all walk the journey together. Happy Anniversary Father and Thank You!
Lorette P. Nault