Archive for August 6th, 2007

Bon Pasteur

Yesterday Cardinal Jean-Marie (Aaron) Lustiger passed from this world to eternity. He was one of the most outstanding pastors of our time. Sometimes bishops are good theologians or politicians or financial directors or, occasionally, even good preachers. Cardinal Lustiger taught by word and example what it means to be a pastor. He had great courage and imagination as well as a profound understanding of the times in which he lived; all of these enabled him to challenge both the secular and the ecclesiastical culture of France with the new wine of the Gospel.
I was a parish priest in his diocese for seven years and was always encouraged in my faith when I listened to him preach. I remember well his homily at the Chrism Mass the year I left Paris (1996) at which he told us that the Diocese of Paris was now ordaining more priests per year than at any time since the French Revolution. A great promoter of vocations and supporter of young priests (-he ordained two hundred and thirty priests in his twenty four years as Archbishop of Paris), he went on in his homily to address the older priests of the diocese, reminding them that, when many of them had been young priests in the 1960s, the old parish priests had tolerated their ways of doing things and had allowed them the freedom to be priests of a different style; then he asked, “And will you not do the same for the young priests of today?”
May his great soul rest in peace.

Read Full Post »