“Nothing less is expected of us as priests…”

This past Saturday our diocese ordained two men to the sacred priesthood. More specifically, His Eminence Francis Cardinal George of Chicago ordained the men as our diocese awaits the installation of Bishop Paprocki on June 22.

Rev. Msgr. Carl Kemme, our diocesan administrator, delivered the homily and I have to say: it probably ranks in the top five homilies I have ever heard and is the most moving reflection on the priesthood I can remember. Here’s a short sound bite:

To my brother priests in this presbyterate I want and need to invite something very important from us. These men to be ordained are a gift to us, gifts not to be taken for granted, but cherished and honored. It behooves us to offer them and those who come after them, in union with our bishop and his successors, a presbyterate that is healthy, supportive and joyful. To that end, I would humbly submit that we have work to do. We cannot afford to allow them or any of us, to be subject to the destructive forces strong in our world today, which have gripped far too many priests in our church, the evil that is isolation, the inclination to cynicism, or the abandonment of the hopes and dreams of the Church for us, in exchange for spiritual apathy and moral indifference. Rather, with courage and love we must invite them and ourselves to stand firm in the faith, to unite in a stronger bond of prayerful and priestly fraternity and to together become saints for nothing less is expected of us as priests after the mind and heart of the Good Shepherd.

My estimable friend Fr. Daren Zehnle has the complete homily posted on his blog. It is definitely worth the read.