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The Priesthood of Christ

Preparing for Ordination

As the day of ordination draws near, the level of excitement present for the faithful of St. Peter Diocese grows stronger each day. This will be the first time St. Peter Cathdedral witnesses the ordination of priests and as we prepare for this historic moment, we ask the faithful to keep our future priests in their prayers especially at this time.

For many of the faithful, this will be their first time witnessing the ordination of priests. According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church,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 (CCC 1536). All priests are called to ministry, for Deacons Ankido Sipo and Simon Esshaki, the life of ministry began long before ordination. From the first year of joining seminary, the seminarians of Mar Abba the Great are immersed in the life of the parish from assisting at Masses, Baptisms and Weddings, as well as youth groups and Catechism school.

Ordination a setting apart and an investiture by Christ himself for his Church. The laying on of hands by the bishop, with the consecratory prayer, constitutes the visible sign of this ordination. Through the ordained ministry, especially that of bishops and priests, the presence of Christ as head of the Church is made visible in the midst of the community of believers – he is like the living image of God the Father(CCC 1538-1549).

The ordination of a priest cannot take place without a Bishop. It is by the hands of the Bishop that the priest is signed with a special character and so is configured to Christ the priest in such a way that he is able to act in the person of Christ the head. Therefore,priests can exercise their ministry only in dependence on the bishop and in communion with him. The promise of obedience they make to the bishop at the moment of ordination and the kiss of peace from him at the end of the ordination liturgy mean that the bishop considers them his co-workers, his sons, his brothers and his friends, and that they in return owe him love and obedience (CCC 1567).