Some reflections on priesthood.
~ If you are afraid to love, never become a priest, never say Mass. The Mass will draw you down upon your soul a torrent of interior suffering which has only one function: to break you wide open and let everybody in the world into your heart. For when you begin to say Mass, the Spirit of God awakens like a giant inside you and bursts the locks of your private sanctuary. If you say Mass, you condemn your soul to the torrent of a love that is so vast and insatiable that you will never be able to bear it alone. T hat love is the love of the Heart of Jesus, burning within your own heart and bringing down upon you the huge weight of His compassion for all the sinners of the world. ~ Thomas Merton
~~ found on Dan Thelen’s blog~~
Every morning a priest puts on the breastplate of prayer.
The man of the world puts on the armor of strength.
A priest becomes weak, so as to be strong.
A man of the world puts on strength, yet becomes weak.
Prayer in a sense emasculates a man. It disrobes him of his manliness, his strength, his pride.
The man of the world revels in his strength. He lifts himself up, is vivified, and takes on the power of manhood.
The man of prayer walks into the world, weakened like a lamb.
The man of the world roars into the world like a Lion, ready for battle.
But here is where the tide turns.
In all his power and might, the man of the world, is nevertheless defeated. He fights against the flesh and in his flesh he is overcome.
The man of prayer enters the world, as already defeated. But in his weakness, he obtains victory. For his shield and his strength is his prayer. For his prayer opens him to the Holy Spirit. The Spirit of God which is more powerful than all of the other enemies combined.