Archbishop Celso Morga in Poland: „There is the need for priests who are priests always”
„Dearest Priests! For me you are like my Diocese… For some days I have been praying for you, for your intentions, for your parishes, for your communities. I pray for the Church in Poland…” – with these words Archbishop Celso Morga Iruzubieta, on Monday, September 16th 2013, in Cracow, addressed the group of 80 Priests and Religious, beginning the two-year formation at the School of Educators in Diocesan and Religious Seminaries, offered by the Salvatorians of the Polish Province under the patronage of the Commission for Clergy of the Polish Episcopate.
The Secretary of the Congregation for the Clergy arrived at the Spiritual Formation Center of the Savlatorians in Cracow (www.cfd.sds.pl), in order to take part in the inauguration ceremony of the new two-year program of the School, which serves those who are already involved in formation work in major seminaries or religious formation houses or prepare themselves for undertaking such task. During the two year period, 2013-2015, they will have ten for 5-day meetings and two series of 8-day Lectio Divina spiritual retreats.
Archbishop Morga presided over the Holy Mass and gave a homily, in which he reflected on the theme of the Church as communion „of all the members, where everyone serves all if he lives fully his own unique role and his own specific vocation” (see: recent edition of the „Directory on the Ministry and Life of Priests”, no. 27, issued by the Congregation). Based on the liturgical readings he focused on four keywords referring to the ministry in the Church seen as communion. According to him these are the following: Salvation, mission, intercession and joy. „We come closer to the heart of the Church if we let ourselves to be guided by our goal, primary and crucial, which is Salvation, if we identify ourselves with our mission, if we intercede for our sisters and brothers, praying for graces they need, and if we share with them our joy that springs from our Faith” – he said.
The Secretary of the Congregation for the Clergy reflected on the declaration of St. Paul, who confessed in his Letter to Timothy that he was appointed the herald and apostle. He said that these words „define not only his function, exercised occasionally, but his entire life as well”. The preacher added: „It is our vocation, my dear Brothers. We are apostles. This declaration is something that defines us, says what we are”. The idea of unity and integrity of priestly life was considered also in lectio magisterialis (“Centrality of the Word of God in integral formation of priests and religious”). He said: „There is the need for shepherds, who are priests not only when they celebrate Holy Mass, administer Sacraments or celebrate exequies, not only when they teach Religion or are on duty at the parish office. There is the need for priests, who are priests always, because continuously in their hearts resounds the Word of God, calling them, integrating them and strengthening them”.
The Secretary of the Vatican Dicastery, which is responsible for life and ministry of priests throughout the world, emphasized the importance of prayerful intercession, mortification and sacrifice of formators for those entrusted to their care: „If superiors are true formators, in a Seminary or at any level of religious formation, then it is a clear indication or rather command obliging them to intercede before Jesus for those they form”. With paternal concern for the profile of the Seminary formation, of which the Congregation for the Clergy is also in charge (by decision of Benedict XVI, January 2013), Archbishop Morga was encouraging each one of the gathered: „You are a formator, then you first should ask the Master for graces for the one entrusted to your care; you, as the first of all, should pray for his healing”. He invited them to contemplate the attitude of the centurion, who asked Jesus for health for his servant. He also invited all to pray through the intercession of the Mother of God for all the Priests thought the world, especially those experiencing difficulties in their personal life or regarding their ministry.
Fr. Krzysztof Wons SDS, director of the Spiritual Formation Center and responsible for coordination of the School of Educators in Diocesan and Religious Seminaries, welcomed the Archbishop in the international community of Priests and Religious gathered in Cracow. The participants come from Poland and other countries: Austria, Belarus, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Slovakia and Ukraine. Among them are also Priests of Greek Catholic Rite.
On Tuesday, September 17th 2013, the Archbishop, native of Spain, visited the Sanctuary of the Black Madonna of Częstochowa and celebrated Holy Mass at the Chapel of the Miraculous Icon (www.jasnagora.com). Sharing his thoughts on his first visit to Poland and Jasna Góra, he said, he met there people, whose Faith is strong and who love the Mother of God. He pointed out that among them he met Priests who desire to be faithful and to serve the people of God as good shepherds. Asked for commenting the call of Pope Francis addressed to the Clergy to renounce luxury and to become more humble, he responded: „Pope Francis strongly encourages [the Church] to return to Evangelical simplicity, especially the shepherds. We well know that the reform of the Church always follows the reform of her shepherds. Pope Francis strongly wishes this reform to be accomplished: the return to simplicity, humility and imitation of Jesus the Good Shepherd”.
Dodano: 07.10.2013, 15:14:14