Friday, June 05, 2009

YEAR FOR PRIESTS - Intercession for Priests

Our Lady and St. John Vianney

I found this site while watching Fr. Mitch Pacwa's show last week on EWTN. Fr. Mitch's guests were Sister Briege McKenna and Fr. Kevin Scallon.

Intercession for Priests There is much information there for praying for priests, ordering books, etc.
The Intercession for Priests was started by Father Kevin Scallon, C.M. at All Hallows College in 1976 in response to the great upheaval in the priesthood in the years following Vatican II.

How it all began...
"The years following Vatican II were a critical time for priests and many were deciding to leave the priesthood. Those who persevere were trying to come to terms with the nature and demands of priestly ministry. Even then, it seemed to me that the crises in the priesthood were not of the kind that would be resolved by human means. When I heard of a programme in the United States called the Intercession for Priests it struck me that something like this was just what was needed. It turned out there were twelve of us with some lay people and Sr. Briege McKenna, O.S.C. We began on the feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, July 16th, 1976. Over the years, thousands of priests have taken part in it from all over Ireland and from places very far away.

Its impact on my own life has been incomparable, as I know it has been on the lives of many, many priests. Only the Lord knows how effective the prayers and intercessions, of so many, have been for the spiritual renewal of the priesthood.

Why Has It Lasted...

It has lasted because it has provided for many priests, a rock, a place of security where they can come and feel at home in their priesthood. It is a familiar place where psalms are sung and heard in a new way; where the divine therapist is encountered in the forgiveness of sin and the binding up of wounds; where there is no "correctness"; where you can pray with and for each other. It is this that draws so many of us to come here year after year.

We thank the Father of all. We thank Jesus, our Eternal High Priest. We thank the Holy Spirit who never fails to teach us. We thank the Mother of God who is always present with us. We thank you, priests, for coming so faithfully. I thank my Vincentian Community for their gentle approval and support. I thank the core group whose fidelity is beyond compare. We thank the countless brothers and sisters who have joined us each weekend and each year at Knock to pray for their priests.

I thank Sr. Briege McKenna, O.S.C. Providentially, Sr. Briege came to see me for the first time on that fateful 16th of July. Her love for the Church and for the priesthood was then, and now, unconditional. Her gift of ministering to priests is quite unique.

I pray that the future of the Intercession for Priests will be as blessed as its past and that it will continue to be a source of strength and grace for many priests in the years to come."

Fr. Kevin Scallon, C.M.

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