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Holy Order

“As a way of showing forth the Church's holiness, it is to be recognized that the consecrated life, which mirrors Christ's own way of life, has an objective superiority. Precisely for this reason, it is an especially rich manifestation of Gospel values and a more complete expression of the Church's purpose, which is the sanctification of humanity. The consecrated life proclaims and in a certain way anticipates the future age, when the fullness of the Kingdom of Heaven, already present in its first fruits and in mystery,[62] will be achieved and when the children of the resurrection will take neither wife nor husband, but will be like the angels of God (cf. Mt. 22:30)” 


Pope John Paul II
Vita Consecrata, no. 32

Information

In Persona Christi

Do I Have A Vocation?

If you feel God may be calling you to serve Him and His people as a priest, deacon or religious, our pastor would be happy to help you discern and answer any questions or concerns you may have.

In the ecclesial service of the ordained minister, it is Christ himself who is present to his church as Head of his Body, Shepherd of his flock, high priest of the redemptive sacrifice, Teacher of Truth. This is what the Church means by saying that a priest, by virtue of the sacrament of Holy Orders, acts in persona Christi Capitis.

It is the same priest, Christ Jesus, whose sacred person his minister truly represents. Now the minister, by reason of the sacerdotal consecration which he has received, is truly made like to the high priest and possesses the authority to act in the power and place of the person of Christ himself

Christ is the source of all priesthood: the pries of the old law was a figure of Christ, and the priest of the new law acts in the person of Christ (St. Thomas Aquinas quoted in CCC 1548)  . . . “in the name of the whole Church”

The ministerial priesthood has the task not only of representing Christ—Head of the Church—before the assembly of the faithful, but also of acting in the name of the whole Church when presenting to God the prayer of the Church, and above all when offering the Eucharistic sacrifice (CCC1552).

Three Degrees of the Sacrament of Holy Orders

Since the beginning, the ordained ministry has been conferred and exercised in three degrees: that of bishops, that of presbyters, and that of deacons. The ministries conferred by ordination are irreplaceable for the organic structure of the Church: without the bishop, presbyters, and deacons, one cannot speak of the Church (CCC1593).

References

CATECHISM OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH - 1536

CANON LAW 1008 - TITLE VI: HOLY ORDERS

CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: Holy Orders

"Holy Orders is the sacrament through which the mission entrusted by Christ to his apostles continues to be exercised in the Church until the end of time: thus it is the sacrament of apostolic ministry. It includes three degrees: episcopate, presbyterate, and diaconate." CCC 1536 by USCCB.org

"By divine institution some among Christ's faithful are, through the sacrament of order, marked with an indelible character and are thus constituted sacred ministers; thereby they are consecrated and deputed so that, each according to his own grade, they fulfill, in the person of Christ the Head, the offices of teaching, sanctifying and ruling, and so they nourish the people of God."

"The Sacrament of 'Holy Orders' is the sacrament by which grace and spiritual power for the discharge of ecclesiastical offices are conferred."

Deacons

Deacons are minister ordained for tasks of service of the Church; they do not receive the ministerial priesthood, but ordination confers on them important functions in the ministry of the word, divine worship, pastoral governance, and the service of charity, tasks which they must carry out under the pastoral authority of their bishop (CCC 1596).

Deacons share in Christ’s mission and grace in a special way. The sacrament of Holy Orders marks them with an imprint which cannot be removed and which configures them to Christ, who made himself the “deacon” or servant of all. Among other tasks, it is the task of deacons to assist the bishop and priests in the celebration of the divine mysteries, above all the Eucharist, in the distribution of Holy Communion, in assisting at and blessing marriages, in the proclamation of the Gospel and preaching, in presiding over funerals, and in dedicating themselves to the various ministries of charity (CCC 1570).

Since the Second Vatican Council the Latin Church [Roman Church] has restored the diaconate “as a proper and permanent rank of the hierarchy,” while the Churches of the East had always maintained it. This permanent diaconate, which can be conferred on married men, constitutes an important enrichment for the Church’s mission. Indeed it is appropriate and useful in its liturgical and pastoral life or whether in its social and charitable works, should “be strengthened by the imposition of hands which has come down form the apostles. They would be more closely bound to the altar and their ministry would be made more fruitful through the sacramental grace of the diaconate (CCC 1571).

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