Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Sacramental ministry must come first for priests, Pope tells audience

Catholic World News - May 05, 2010

Priests should make the administration of the sacraments their top pastoral priority, Pope Benedict XVI told his public audience on Wednesday, May 5.

Continuing his weekly talks on the priesthood as the Year for Priests draws toward a close, the Pope said that a special emphasis on sacramental ministry is necessary because "various schools of thought" have neglected the sacraments, while emphasizing the duty of priests as preachers and teachers.

The proclamation of the Gospel is important, the Pope said, but the primary purpose of the priestly ministry is to deliver the sacraments, providing the faithful with the means of sanctification.

"Sanctifying a person means putting that person in contact with God," the Pontiff reminded his audience. The priesthood was instituted for sacramental ministry, and no other function is equally important. Moreover, the Pope observed, "missionary announcement and worship are never separate," and devotion to the sacraments is in itself a powerful form of evangelization.

The Pope urged all priests to imitate the Curé of Ars and to "be willing, generous, and attentive in giving the faithful the treasures of grace that God has placed in our hands, treasures of which we are not masters but custodians and administrators."

In a message addressed directly to priests, the Pope called upon priests to "practice liturgy and worship with joy and love," and to "return to the confessional."

Additional sources for this story
Some links will take you to other sites, in a new window.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach five million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Progress toward our April expenses ($18,914 to go):
$35,000.00 $16,086.48
54% 46%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

There are no comments yet for this item.

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Smaller Church, Bigger Faith, 3: Ecclesiastical Discipline April 17
The Holy Spirit and Evangelization: A Primer April 16
Journey to the Sun: A Strange Biography of Junípero Serra April 16
Russia's demographic recovery + US demographic decline = danger April 16
James Carroll strikes (at the Church) again April 16

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis's Easter Message 'Urbi et Orbi' (To the City and the World): full text, link to video CWN - 6 hours ago
Pope Francis: Easter Vigil homily (full text) CWN - 6 hours ago