Bishops, Priests, DeaconsSpiritual fathers, Shepherds
At the sight of the crowds, his heart was moved with sadness for them because they were troubled and abandoned, like sheep without a shepherd.
– Mt. 9:36
A priest is the spiritual father of a community. His primary role is to be a shepherd of the Catholic community. He does this by proclaiming the Word of God, teaching the faith, celebrating the sacraments, and being of service to those who are in need. He offers spiritual guidance, coaches people in prayer, accompanies those who are ill, prepares couples for marriage, and encourages growth of the charisms in the Christian family.
These are very exciting times, but a historical period with great risks. The hunger for the ‘’spiritual’’ today is huge, fruit of decades of secularity. Transcendental meditation, yoga, Buddhism, and many varied philosophies are flourishing in every corner. People who have a spiritual hunger can be at risk, and this is exacerbated by fragile religious foundations and no philosophical or theological training. The priest is a spiritual guide, a Christian, a father in the faith, who helps lead people through this fog, because he does not lead. The Lord does! Lord give us good, wise and kindly pastors.