On this morning of Thursday of Holy Week, we in the Greensburg Diocese gather as bishops, priests and laity to celebrate the Chrism Mass. This liturgy sees God's People celebrate the Eucharist, bless the Holy Oils that will be used in the parishes of the Diocese for the administration of the Sacraments, and witness the priests renewing their priestly promises.
As part of that renewal, after the priests make their renewed promises, the bishop addresses the people present and says this:
As for you, dearest sons and daughters,
pray for your Priests,
that the Lord may pour out his gifts
abundantly upon them,
and keep them faithful as ministers of Christ,
the High Priest,
so that they may lead you to him,
who is the source of salvation.
He asks for prayers for himself, and then concludes:
May the Lord keep us all in his charity
and lead all of us,
shepherds and flock,
to eternal life. Amen.
In these days when a life of ministry is often disparaged, when the gift of priesthood is suspect, when all are tarnished by the sins of a few, we ask for your prayers as we ask for your forgiveness for our failures, we pledge our lives in renewed ministry in the love of Christ, and we pray that as we share in the priesthood of Jesus Christ we may witness to the Good News of his Passion, Death and Resurrection.