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  • Writer's pictureDavid Carlson

Priests need to be humble and listen -- like Fr. Tony Flannery

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As reported by Vatican Radio: Pope Francis

Recalling the Pastoral Epistles the Apostle Paul sent to his disciples Timothy and Titus in which he highlights human qualities such as the capacity to be welcoming, sober, patient, meek, reliable and good of heart as absolute necessities as well, of course, as the gifts of faith and holiness for those who receive the gift of vocation.

No bishop, priest or deacon – the Pope said – must assume an authoritarian attitude, and behave as if his community were his own property and personal reign.

The acknowledgment – he continued - that his ministry is a gift and a grace, helps a pastor never to fall into the temptation of putting himself at the center of attention or of relying only upon himself, Francis said.

A bishop, priest or deacon must never assume that he knows all, always has the right answer and never has to ask for help. To the contrary – the Pope said – he must always be humble and understanding towards others, he must listen to his people and be aware that he always has something to learn, even from those who may still be far from faith and from the Church.

Let us thank the Lord – Pope Francis concluded – for this ministry in the Church, and pray that our ordained ministers may always be sustained in their efforts to be living icons of the Father’s loving concern for all his children.


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