Pope Benedict presided over the ordination of 14 men to the priesthood yesterday in Rome. His full homily is here. This particular point I thought very encouraging for those about to be ordained.
You are granted today, with the sacrament of Holy Orders, to preside at the Eucharist! You are entrusted with the redemptive sacrifice of Christ, you are entrusted with his body that is given and his blood that is shed. Of course, Jesus offers his sacrifice, his humble and total gift of love, to the Church his Bride, on the cross. It was on that wood, that the Father dropped a grain of wheat in the field of the world so that dying it would become mature fruit, the giver of life. But, in God's plan, this gift of Christ is made present in the Eucharist thanks to that "potestas sacra" that the sacrament of Orders confers on you presbyters. When we celebrate Holy Mass we hold in our hands the Bread of Heaven, the Bread of God, which is Christ, the grain broken to multiply and become the true food of life for the world. It is something that cannot but fill you with intimate wonder, lively joy and immense gratitude: Now the love and gift of Christ crucified and glorious, pass through your hands, your voice, your heart! It is an ever new experience of wonder to see that in my hands, in my voice the Lord accomplishes this mystery of his presence!
Please pray for Br Andrew Berry OSB, Michael Collis, Luke Goymour & Michael Puljic who are to be ordained over the next three weeks, and Fr Gary Buckby who was ordained last weekend. Finally, please also pray for Pascal Ravi Bhaskar, Wilfred Joseph & Vincent Aruluandhu, all Sacred Hearth brothers who were ordained deacon yesterday.
God be with you all.
Update Oops, that should be Sacred Heart, not Sacred Hearth. I'm not sure if God would have a fireplace in Heaven, but it raises an interesting theological debate!