Thursday, 20 March 2008

The foundations of Priestly celibacy.

St John Mary Vianney Society culture is a culture which helps priests to be born again each time they go up to the altar to celebrate Mass.
St Augustine asked: why did God not ask Mary to remain a virgin, but rather left her to make a vow of virginity? It was becuase He wanted Mary to choose this freely. Mary's virginity is the model of priestly celibacy and lies at the heart of the new creation. If we look at celibacy from a subjective or psychological perspective we fail to see its full meaning. Mary shows us what celibacy is; she shows us how a celibate person is prepared by God for ministry. Indeed, in Mary we see that celebacy is linked more deeply to the nature of the Church than is marriage.

The reason for celibacy is so that priests can love the Church as Christ loves it; and Christ's love for the Church is found in the Eucharist. This is why B16 has said so many times that the foundation of celibacy is the Eucharist. This is not a pietistical notion; the Church is called to receive the sposal love of Christ. A faithful priest is a necessity for the Church. What a priest accepts as an intimate gift to him - the love of Christ - is something that belongs to the whole Church. This is an objective thing. This is why a priest needs to be born again before he celebrates Mass, and he needs souls who will immolate themselves on his behalf! Here, both consecrated virginity and married spouses have much to offer in order to build up the priesthood.


Anonymous said...

We do, Father Richard, we do. without it, we die as well. A group, locally, fasts and prays on Fridays for a good number of priests and religious, for the reaons you outline - a love for the Church. Be encouraged. And I am sure many hidden suppoters are doing the same.

Anonymous said...

you might want to correct your spelling of the word "celibate," not to be confused with the word "celebrate." Blessings.

Fr Richard Aladics said...