Monday, August 01, 2005

Real Priesthood

It's stories like this which knock the wind out of Matrix-esque ads and poster boys: a real, live (normal) priest talking about the joys and challenges of his ministry in a time of lean vocations. And to the BBC, no less. (Warning: Some photos show priest in civilian dress. This may infuriate Trads and other automatons.)

Roger Taylor -- this one didn't drum for Queen or Duran Duran, sorry -- doesn't see the numbers of the faithful as the problem. But he does see a dichotomy in the execution of ministry, expressing a commitment to the pastoral over the hysterical:

For all his ideals, he realises people's lives do not fit neatly into church teachings.

Asked if he would give communion to a divorced person he replied: "I never ask" about people's circumstances.

"The purpose of moral law is not to exclude people but to bolster the idea of love," he said.

He said priests should not get bogged down by routines.

"Once priests start to think of themselves as sacrament machines they lose sense of the real business of what we do."

Taylor's story sure beats my idea of "PRIESTHOOD. So hot right now." Tip to Malcolm the great, one of Father Roger's parishioners and a Loggia favourite, for sending it along.



Blogger Fred said...

Lacking further context, the following line could sound as if this priest does not take an interest in parishoner's lives for fear of having to enforce rules:

'"I never ask" about people's circumstances.'

Don't ask, don't tell might work for the US military, but it would seem to be the antithesis of Jesus's own pastoral method.

I wonder if someone could clarify the comment of this priest.

1/8/05 13:12  

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