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Priesthood = Marriage

St Katherine Drexel in WestonToday was the installation Mass for Fr Pedro Corces as pastor at St. Katharine Drexel in Weston.  As the former Vocations Director for the past 10 years, it was nice to see Bishop Noonan with several other priests & seminarians, many of whom he pastored to the priesthood.  Fr Pedro was also one of the 3 vocation board members that interviewed me.  In the short time I spoke to him, I can see what I great pastor he will be with his sincerity, insight and compassion.  During the bishop’s sermon, I was struck by how the marriage vows were used to show the relationship between pastor and parish family:

Do you [Pastor] take [the church] to be your Bride [of Christ]? Do you promise to be true to Her in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health? Will you love and honor Her all the days of your life? Is this your solemn vow?

And the parish responses as the “Bride”.  What a beautiful picture of the priesthood.  Just as in a marriage, self-sacrificing to care for each other.  In Ephesians 5:23-28,

23 For the husband is head of his wife just as Christ is head of the church, he himself the savior of the body. 24 As the church is subordinate to Christ, so wives should be subordinate to their husbands in everything. 25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ loved the church and handed himself over for her 26 to sanctify her, cleansing her by the bath of water with the word, 27 that he might present to himself the church in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. 28 So (also) husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.   (NAB)

A priest sacrifices his own bride & family to care for and sanctify the church as the “Bride of Christ.”  It makes sense to me.

Categories: matrimony, priesthood
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