Thursday, July 7, 2011

A Modest Proposal

Over the last few months people have asked me if I know Fr John Corapi, and what my thoughts on his whole situation is.  I do not know Fr Corapi - though we both work for EWTN, our paths never crossed when I was over recording, and I presume when we are next over in Alabama we will not bump into him now.  I have not blogged on the situation, nor do I intend to say anything because I do not know the full facts, though it seems from the statement issued by his superior things are not good.

What I am going to say, though, is that we need to pray for him and for all priests.  As a priest I know too well that I am a weak human being entrusted with great privileges and graces and like any priest, I could be a sitting duck for any fall.  We need grace, and perhaps we need it more than lay people because if the devil wants to attack the flock he will go first for the shepherds.  I was told when in seminary that the devil walked the corridors, and it is true - the roaring lion is wandering around looking for someone to devour.  That helps me understand, for example, why things were so bad in seminary.  Those priests who were not as faithful to the Church as they should have been, needed a lot of prayer because they were appointed to form the clergy of the future so they were definitely in the firing line.

Many good people pray for priests, and I hope they continue to do so.  If you, dear reader, do not pray for priests, please start now and remember us every day.  Of late I have started to pray more intensely for priests, and I would like to share with you what I do so if you are not praying already for priests, you might join me.  I call it my "Daily Mite" for my brother priests, and I offer it twice a day, once after Morning Prayer and after Evening Prayer, that way I won't forget it. Its very simple: an Our Father, three Hail Marys and the Glory Be, like this:

For priests in trouble and in need....
                    Our Father

For deceased priests, especially those who have no one to pray for them...
                    Hail Mary

For our bishops, that they may be faithful...
                   Hail Mary

For priestly vocations and the protection of our seminarians...
                   Hail Mary

In thanksgiving for the priesthood, and in honour of the holy priests in heaven...
                  Glory be

Immaculate Heart of Mary, Mother of Priests, pray for them
St Jean-Marie Vianney, Patron of All Priests, pray for them

1 comment:

  1. Fr Willie Doyle SJ (, the heroic military chaplain who died while ministering to wounded soldiers in World War 1, was especially devoted to the sanctification of priests. He offered many of this sufferings in the war, and his very considerable voluntary penances, for this intention. Amongst his numerous apostolic projects, in 1911 he became the Director-General for Ireland of the League for Priestly Sanctity. It may sound quaint to modern ears, but its work is greatly needed today!

    Here is the prayer for priests composed by Fr Doyle:

    O my God, pour out in abundance Thy spirit of sacrifice upon Thy priests. It is both their glory and their duty to become victims, to be burnt up for souls, to live without ordinary joys, to be often the objects of distrust, injustice, and persecution.

    The words they say every day at the altar, "This is my Body, this is my Blood," grant them to apply to themselves: "I am no longer myself, I am Jesus, Jesus crucified. I am, like the bread and wine, a substance no longer itself, but by consecration another."

    O my God, I burn with desire for the sanctification of Thy priests. I wish all the priestly hands which touch Thee were hands whose touch is gentle and pleasing to Thee, that all the mouths uttering such sublime words at the altar should never descend to speaking trivialities.

    Let priests in all their person stay at the level of their lofty functions, let every man find them simple and great, like the Holy Eucharist, accessible to all yet above the rest of men. O my God, grant them to carry with them from the Mass of today, a thirst for the Mass of tomorrow, and grant them, ladened themselves with gifts, to share these abundantly with their fellow men. Amen.