Saturday, February 25, 2017
Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 250 - Part II.
(Youcat answer - repeated) The priests of the Old Covenant saw their duty as mediating between heavenly and earthly things, between God and his people. Since Christ is the “one mediator between God and men” (1 Tim 2:5), he perfected and ended that priesthood. After Christ there can be an ordained priesthood only in Christ, in Christ’s sacrifice on the Cross, and through a calling and apostolic mission from Christ.
A deepening through CCC
(CCC 1541) The liturgy of the Church, however, sees in the priesthood of Aaron and the service of the Levites, as in the institution of the seventy elders (Cf. Num 11:24-25), a prefiguring of the ordained ministry of the New Covenant. Thus in the Latin Rite the Church prays in the consecratory preface of the ordination of bishops: God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,… by your gracious word you have established the plan of your Church. From the beginning, you chose the descendants of Abraham to be your holy nation. You established rulers and priests and did not leave your sanctuary without ministers to serve you.... (Roman Pontifical, Ordination of Bishops 26, Prayer of Consecration).
Reflecting and meditating
(Youcat comment) A Catholic priest who administers the sacraments acts not on the basis of his own power or moral perfection (which unfortunately he often lacks), but rather “in persona Christi”. Through his ordination, the transforming, healing, saving power of Christ is grafted onto him. Because a priest has nothing of his own, he is above all a servant. The distinguishing characteristic of every authentic priest, therefore, is humble astonishment at his own vocation.
(CCC 1542) At the ordination of priests, the Church prays: Lord, holy Father,… when you had appointed high priests to rule your people, you chose other men next to them in rank and dignity to be with them and to help them in their task.... you extended the spirit of Moses to seventy wise men.... You shared among the sons of Aaron the fullness of their father's power (Roman Pontifical, Ordination of Priests 22, Prayer of Consecration).