Monday, June 28, 2004

I already have a Priesthood Sunday!

One of the biggest bureaucratic wastes of time in the U.S. is the National Federation of Priests' Councils.

Case in point: I received a flyer from this body that announced the upcoming Priesthood Sunday. Inside it explains how priests are so disheartened right now and how the laity need a chance to express their thanks for the priests' presence. So they have created this arbitrary day for the "celebration of Priesthood." I was advised in bold, italic letters, "Please give this to the Parish Council." I gave it to the waste bin.

Okay, first, I already have a day to celebrate the priesthood. It's called Holy Thursday. Furthermore, since Sunday is the primary celebration of the Paschal Mystery, isn't every Sunday Priesthood Sunday? Second, if I were a lay person on a parish council and was handed this, I would be ticked. If my priest needs encouragement or praise, I think I can handle dishing it up. I don't need a special Sunday Mass celebration to do this. Third, handing this off to the Parish Council strikes me as though I were inviting them to a surprise party for myself. The whole thing seems incredibly self-serving.

So here's my suggestion. If you love your pastor, whatever the reason, stop tomorrow, write a note, phone him up, or get in touch somehow and tell him. Give him the reasons and tell him you are praying for him. If you hate your pastor, spend a half an hour in front of the Blessed Sacrament, and pray for both of your conversions.

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