14 February 2008

From His E-minence

{Reflecting on the ordination of six men to the transitional deaconate}

Coming as it did the day after Father Daniel Kennedy’s funeral Mass, the ordination was a very striking sign of how the priesthood renews itself. That week we not only buried one of the newest priests in the archdiocese, ordained last year, but also Father J. Walter Stocklosa who was Boston’s longest ordained priest and the last surviving member of the class of 1940.

In my homily, I recalled how at the end of Graham Greene’s wonderful book “The Power and the Glory” the people of the Mexican province are mourning the death of their last priest. The priest, who had been in hiding and serving the people secretly, had been executed. A group of the people are gathered in a house when a knock comes at the door, and at the door is another priest. I mentioned that Graham Greene never gives the priests names to show that their deepest identity is in the priesthood of Jesus Christ, not in their personalities or who they were.


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