"Faithfulness of Christ, faithfulness of priests" is the theme of the Year for Priests announced on March 16, 2009, by the Holy Father. The Pope inaugurated the Year on June 19, the feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, presiding at Vespers in St. Peter's Basilica where the relics of the saintly 'Cure of Ars' were brought for the occasion by Bishop Guy Bagnard of Belley-Ars, France. He will close the year on June 19, 2010, at a "World Meeting of Priests" in St. Peter's Square.

During the course of the Year, Benedict XVI will proclaim St. Jean Marie Vianney as patron saint of all the priests of the world. A "Directory for Confessors and Spiritual Directors" will also be published, as will a collection of texts by the Supreme Pontiff on essential aspects of the life and mission of priests in our time.

The Congregation for the Clergy, together with diocesan ordinaries and superiors of religious institutes, will undertake to promote and coordinate the various spiritual and pastoral initiatives which are being organised to highlight the role and mission of the clergy in the Church and in modern society, and the need to intensify the permanent formation of priests, associating it with that of seminarians.

Letter to Clergy for the Year for Priests Benedict XVI

Letter on the Occasion of the World Day of Prayer for the Sacntification of Priests — Congregation for the Clergy

A special indulgence has been granted by the Apostolic Penitentiary for those who attend Mass and offer prayers to Jesus Christ the Eternal High Priest, for the priests of the Church during this year.

�As the Father has sent me, I also send you" (Jn 20:21)."

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St. John Eudes