It is 21st January 2019. We celebrate the memorial of St Agnes, Virgin and Martyr. The readings are from Hebrews 5:1-10; and the Gospel from the Mark 2:18-22. Unless there is holiness and voluntary sacrifices found in the contemporary priests, the Church cannot be strong with the strings of faith. The priests are invited to bring the humanity closer to God. The first reading teaches us so strongly that Christ is a priest like all other priests except sin. The priests are called by God and set apart to lead God’s people to God and closer to the sanctuary of the Lord. Perhaps, there is so much going on with the priesthood of the day in the Church. The Church is exposed, made weak and torn into pieces due to the worldly attachment, commercializing the priesthood and deeply rooted business-mentality and profiteering mindset among the priests. Very seldom do we see a priest praying, motivating a community that lost hope, waiting on the sinners and ministering to the needs of the poor, the hungry, the homeless, the orphan, and the naked. We have made the priesthood so attractive that many are joining for wrong reasons. As long as the priests are looking for affluence and money power, there is no way the Church could survive the tsunami of selfishness and sinfulness of the world and be the witnesses of the Gospel of Christ. May we intercede for our priests that they may live in holiness that embrace the fallenness in others. Let not our priests encroach the weak lanes of the vulnerable and fragile humanity around. The ideal priesthood of Jesus needs to traced and embraced in our priests. No priest needs to be so holy to such a level that they cannot live with the other and tolerate the weakness and brokenness of the other. Humanity of Christ that is displayed calls for representation of humanity to God and to remain humane to all people. The personal sufferings of the priests whether it is spiritual or emotional coupled with compassion and forgiveness are the manure for the faithful. “Every high priest chosen from among mortals is put in charge of things pertaining to God on their behalf, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins. He is able to deal gently with the ignorant and wayward, since he himself is subject to weakness; and because of this he must offer sacrifice for his own sins as well as for those of the people.” (Heb.5:1). The responsorial Psalm intercedes, “You are a priest for ever, a priest like Melchizedek of old.” (Ps.109:4). The Gospel exposes the mentality of people towards those who serve God and lead a public life. Somehow and somewhere, someone is complaining, commenting and criticising the efforts made by those who have come forward to serve humanity. People are trying to patch things with the wrong pieces and expect the others to behave accordingly. We must not give up in the pursuit of holy living even if we are found fault with and unnoticed by the rest of the world. We do not need to be holy and good so as to impress anyone. Our expressions of holiness must make us to come closer to God and those who are in need of God. May you have a good day and let us help our priests to live in holiness and intercede for them. May God bless you.

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