Thursday, August 03, 2006

Saint John Vianney

I love You, O my God,
and my only desire is to love You
until the last breath of my life.

I love You, O my infinitely lovable God,
and I would rather die loving You,
than live without loving You.

I love You, Lord
and the only grace I ask
is to love You eternally...

My God,
if my tongue cannot say in every moment that I love You,
I want my heart to repeat it to You as often as I draw breath.

-St. John Mary Vianney

Together we wish to thank Christ, the Prince of Pastors, for this extraordinary model of priestly life and service which the saintly Curé of Ars offers to the whole Church, and above all to us priests. How many of us prepared ourselves for the Priesthood, or today exercise the difficult task of caring for souls, having before our eyes the figure of Saint John Mary Vianney! His example cannot be forgotten.
More than ever we need his witness, his intercession, in order to face the situations of our times when, in spite of a certain number of hopeful signs, evangelization is being contradicted by a growing secularization, losing sight of the Kingdom of God, when often, even in the pastoral ministry, there is a too exclusive concern for the social aspect, for temporal aims.

Those who are already priests, those who are preparing for the Priesthood and those who will be called to it must fix their eyes on his example and follow it. The faithful too will more clearly grasp, thanks to him, the mystery of the Priesthood of their priests.
No, the figure of the Curé of Ars does not fade.

–John Paul II, Letter to My Brother Priests, Holy Thursday 1986

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