Diocese of Toledo, Ohio

Browsing From the Pastor

Priest, Prophet and King

Dear Friends,

            As I mentioned at the Masses last weekend, I want to thank you for your Christmas and birthday gifts to me. With heartfelt gratitude, I appreciate your generosity and kindness toward me. I have mentioned it to some people individually, but I want to reiterate to all how grateful and filled with joy I am to be the pastor of Resurrection and St. Mary of the Snows. Know that I have been and will continue to pray for all of you. Please pray for me that I may be a good and worthy pastor to all of you.

            I'm certainly late with this, but it is worth again covering this topic. When we celebrating the Baptism of the Lord Jesus Christ, I brought up the fact that Christ is High Priest of all priests, the Prophet of all prophets, and the King of kings, and I reminded everyone about what happens during the Rite of Baptism: we are anointed with Sacred Chrism as priests, prophets, and kings, just as Christ is priest, prophet, and king. What exactly does this mean for us? I attempted to mention briefly in the homily, but time constraints limited me. I'll do my best here, but space also limits me.

            We are all anointed priests. Of course, it's important to understand here that not everyone is an ordained priest who says Mass, hears confessions, and the like, but we are all priests. On the most fundamental level, what is a priest? We can look at the Christian understanding, the Jewish understanding, even the pagan understanding: a priest is one who offers sacrifice. Jesus Christ is the eternal High Priest offering the sacrifice of His life for the sake of the world. An ordained priest offers the sacrifice of Christ at Mass. Every baptized person is meant to offer sacrifices of praise, of thanksgiving, of our very lives. The offertory or presentation of gifts at Mass is a good time for us to offer our sacrifices to God; the collection is symbolic of the prayers, joys, and sufferings we offer to God. The ordained priest collects the sacrifice of each person and joins them to the sacrifice of Christ. A simple way to live out our role as priest is to pray the Morning Offering, to offer to God everything of our day.

            We are all anointed prophets. Being a prophet doesn't mean predicting the future. Being a prophet means speaking the word that God has given us. A prophet is one who speaks on behalf of God; a prophet speaks the truth and calls out injustice. A prophets reveals what God intends for humanity. We are anointed kings. The biblical vision of kingship displays that kings are at the service of their people. Living as kings means looking out for the wellbeing of those entrusted to us. As kings, we live to serve those entrusted to us. Jesus is the ultimate priest, prophet, and king, and we ask Him to help us live out those roles.

            For those unfamiliar with the Morning Offering, here it is: O Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer You my prayers, works, joys, and sufferings of this day in union with the holy sacrifice of the Mass throughout the world. I offer them for all the intention of Your Sacred Heart: the salvation of souls, reparation for sins, the reunion of all Christians. I offer them for the intentions of all bishops, all apostles of prayers, and the Holy Father's intentions this month. Amen.

            Have a great week!

In Christ,

Fr. Matt


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