By: Cardinal Robert Sarah
“We have to look at the truth head-on: the priesthood seems to be failing,” explains Cardinal Robert Sarah in this book. “The priesthood, its status, its mission, and its authority have been placed at the service of the worst crimes. . . The search for worldly glory, power, honors, earthly pleasures, and money has infiltrated the hearts of priests, bishops, and cardinals. How can we tolerate such deeds without trembling, without weeping, without asking ourselves probing questions?”
In the arid desert of Western society, where man believes he is happier without God, Cardinal Sarah invites priests to become ever more clearly the signs of the presence of God in the world.
Collected here are the writings of the greatest saints to help priests rediscover the essence of their priesthood so the people of God can renew their gaze upon them. This is not a treatise of academic theology, Cardinal Sarah explains, but a theology of the saints that is contemplative and spiritual as well as practical and concrete.
“Each text will be for us like a renewed way of looking, a luminous feature to draw more accurately the spiritual portrait of the priest as Jesus Christ intended him and as we need him today,” writes Cardinal Sarah. “In light of these teachings of the Church and of the saints, together, we will examine the quality of our relations with God.”
Ultimately, he claims, priests must avoid becoming simply specialists in God and masters of the Faith. Instead, priests must allow themselves to be transformed, renewed, governed, and divinized by it. It is through a priest’s gospel-filled life and testimony that he will restore God to His place in the world.
“This book is an invitation to sit at the feet of Jesus, our High Priest,” Cardinal Sarah explains, “to allow ourselves to be renewed in our priesthood. At His feet and following in His footsteps, we learn to be priests, to let ourselves be formed in His image and likeness, and to enter fully into the Christian mysteries that we celebrate with faith.”