What is a Catholic Priest?

The priest is anointed for the poor, for prisoners, for the oppressed, for those who are sorrowing and alone. He prays over the realities of their everyday lives, troubles, joys, burdens and hopes. 

Catechism of the Catholic Church says:

The whole Church is a priestly people. Through Baptism all the faithful share in the priesthood of Christ. This participation is called the "common priesthood of the faithful." Based on this common priesthood and ordered to its service, there exists another participation in the mission of Christ: the ministry conferred by the sacrament of Holy Orders, where the task is to serve in the name and in the person of Christ the Head in the midst of the community. (CCC1591). The ministerial priesthood differs in essence from the common priesthood of the faithful because it confers a sacred power for the service of the faithful. The ordained ministers exercise their service for the People of God by teaching ,divine worship and pastoral governance. (CCC 1592)

Through that sacrament, a priest, by the anointing of the Holy Spirit, becomes forever a representative of Christ and Christ acts through him. (CCC 1563)

Priesthood is about leadership and service, following the example of Jesus. This leadership takes the shape of caring for people, speaking God’s Word to them, celebrating Mass and other sacraments, and being with people in the best and worst times of their lives, seeking to be the presence of Jesus to them throughout the parishes of our Diocese. A few priests also have specialised ministries as chaplains to schools, hospitals or the armed forces, as university lecturers, or working in a remote outback town.

A priest uses his own talents and interests as part of his ministry – be they sporting, musical, cultural or academic. Priesthood is not just a one-size-fits-all job, but a way of seeking to be the best person you can be, growing closer to Jesus, bringing others to Jesus, and making a real difference. It’s a life of significance and purpose.

A priest’s life is essentially one of prayer and loving service. A priest always draws on Christ as his source of grace and life. With St Paul he says, "for me to live is Christ.".

Catholic Diocese of
Broken Bay

Building 2, 423 Pennant Hills Road
Pennant Hills NSW 2120

PO Box 340
Pennant Hills NSW 1715

Phone 02 9847 0000
Fax 02 9847 0001
news@dbb.org.au

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