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    Fr. Joseph Jenkins

  • The blog header depicts an important and yet mis-understood New Testament scene, Jesus flogging the money-changers out of the temple. I selected it because the faith that gives us consolation can also make us very uncomfortable. Both Divine Mercy and Divine Justice meet in Jesus. Priests are ministers of reconciliation, but never at the cost of truth. In or out of season, we must be courageous in preaching and living out the Gospel of Life. The title of my blog is a play on words, not Flogger Priest but Blogger Priest.

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Priestly Celibacy: Priesthood with a Difference

Married, single or celibate, we often experience this world as a veil of tears. The living is hard. We face many obstacles to happiness and security. Nothing lasts. Everyone faces the challenges of suffering, sickness and death. The celibate might live for the world to come, as a remarkable sign, and yet he does not escape the demands and trials of this world. We are called to know freedom in Jesus Christ. But, the bondage that arises from the world, the flesh and the devil is always seeking to ensnare us or draw us back in. Knowing that Jesus died that we might no longer be slaves to sin, we turn to repentance and faith. The celibate priest throws himself into the hands of God to be a sentinel for others in the race to true freedom.

Celibacy has such a high value or importance that it is worth all the applicable sacrifices. Those who question its worth for priestly ministry do not appreciate this fact. The Church is wise and prudent to insist upon it as a mandatory charism and discipline. It makes possible a priesthood with a positive difference. We do not belittle the contributions and valuable service of our few married priests; rather, we keep them in prayer as men who are obliged to parcel themselves out between the obligations associated with the marriage bed and the altar.

Ordinary 23, Tuesday

[438] 1 Col 2:6-15 / PS 145:1b-2, 8-9, 10-11 / Lk 6:12-19

We as Catholics speak of Peter as the ROCK of the Church established by Jesus; and yet, such is only possible because Jesus is the foundation stone upon which our faith is built. We are to trust in the revelation of Christ, not in the follies of men which are accounted as wisdom. Similarly, we are reminded that ours is a jealous God and that we are privileged to know him and the genuine worship of the Eucharist. Too many are swayed by a world that does not know God and by New Age sorceries which replace truth with error. Our faith is neither a law book nor a philosophy of life; it is based upon the person of Jesus Christ. God has come to save his people. Only he has the power to save us. The Cross of Christ has vanquished powers and principalities. It redeems us and makes possible the forgiveness of sins. We are no longer the property of the devil but sons and daughters of the Father. We are called to walk with the Lord, and sometimes even to be carried by him.