Some random thoughts on community by Father Stefan

Yesterday when I was meeting my spiritual director he had the idea that I ought to write a book on priestly fraternity.  And reflect on some of things that I have learned in 16 years as a priest. These are just some random thoughts that I will develop later on.

What was the primary community of Jesus? You might be tempted as say the apostles. But Jesus primary community was the Father and the Holy Spirit.  Jesus said about the Father, “The Father is always with me.” Jesus was a man always in touch with the Holy Spirit. St Irneanus described the Holy Spirit, “As the constant companion and friend of Jesus.”

Jesus relationship with the apostles flowed out of his primary community with the Father and the Holy Spirit. Jesus also had many good friends with woman such as Martha and Mary.

How does this relate to the life of a priest? Like everyone else a priest ought to draw his life from his relationship with the Father Son and Holy Spirit. A priest primary community than is his fellow priests. Even if a priest lives alone his primary community is with other priests.

I think of Saint Damien of Molokai. One of his greatest crosses is that he had to live alone. I am sure that he had many close friends among the people he served he still longed for a community of priests.

Why does a priest need a community of other priests? One reason is that a layperson will never fully understand the life of a priest. A priest will never fully understand the life a layperson.

A married couple life in most cases resolves around their children. As it should be.  Married people gravitate towards others married couples. Just think that when someone is single and all their friends start to get married doesn’t the single person often feel like they don’t fit in with their old friends.

The single person is a part of the lives of their married friends but it is harder for the married couple to be a part of the single person life.  As yourself this question if you are married, “when was the last time that you and your spouse visited the home of a single person?”

I think the same dynamic exists with priests, they become part of other people lives but it is harder for other people to become part of their life. Because this is true a priest primary community is meant to be other priests.

Just some thoughts, random at that but will put it together

 

Blessing Fr Stefan

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2 thoughts on “Some random thoughts on community by Father Stefan”

  1. I would like to point out that for St. Damien when he was living on the island with the people that were suffering from leprosy, he wanted to be more accepted and trusted by them. It was not until Fr. Damien came down with leprosy and announced it to the community, that he was fully accepted by everyone. This holy priest did great works to ease the suffering and I am sure made many friendships. The path of a priest is to administer to his parish, his community and lives are enriched both ways. Wonderful to you to mention St. Damien.

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