“Ordinary men are given the authority of the priesthood. Worthiness and willingness — not experience, expertise, or education — are the qualifications for priesthood ordination.” David A. Bednar
One of the problems that happens when a priest falls from grace in a public manner is that the people are often crushed and dismayed. I have always thought it was because too many people put their priests on pedestals. They think that their priests can do no wrong. And when priests do, their whole concept about their priest and priests in general is shattered.
Truth be told, priests are normal human beings. We are no different from anyone else. We have hopes and dreams and aspirations. We have temptations and struggles. We continuously fight to stay on the straight and narrow. Sometimes, we fall flat on our faces.
When a man presents himself to the bishop for sacred orders, he is not presenting himself as an experienced, educated expert. No. He is presenting himself as a man whom the seminary has found worthy of ordination and who is willing to accept the role and responsibility of ordained ministry. It’s a pretty tough thing to do and something that takes a lot of courage and trust.
Being willing is everything. If a person is willing to do his best, the Lord can move in and give him the gifts that he needs to get the job done and to increase in holiness throughout his days. Each day, an ordained minister — deacon or priest — has to say that he is willing that day to take on the mantel of Holy Orders once again. It is the same for those who are married. Each day, they take their vows once again to be faithful to one another.
Today, three men will present themselves to Bishop McClory: Steven Caraher, Zach Glick, and Robert Ross. Steven and Zach will be ordained transitional deacons (God willing, they will be ordained priests next summer) and Robert Ross will be ordained to the priesthood. They are good men, men found worthy of orders by their seminaries and men who are eager and willing to respond to God’s call to Holy Orders. We pray for them this day, asking God to give them all the graces that they need.
FAITH ACTION: Please pray for those to be ordained today to the diaconate and priesthood at Holy Angels Cathedral. Kindly pray, as well, for an increase of vocations to the priesthood and religious life.