On the 29 June 2013 The Most Rev. Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster, ordained eight men to the Priesthood in a service at Westminster Cathedral. The ordination took place on the vigil of the solemnity of Sts Peter & Paul.
In his homily Archbishop Nichols reflected on the importance of the love of God and its importance for the Priesthood: “Such love in practice is, of course, at the heart of the priest’s life, of these men ordained today.
Everything that you do for your people, in all the years of your priesthood, will be an expression of your love for the Lord. If it is not, then it will soon become a burden and immensely tiring. Stay rooted in the Lord each day, then the work you do will be your strength and joy.
Two particular tasks will be at the heart of your priestly ministry: to help keep us all rooted in Christ; and to help keep us all united in Christ.”
Archbishop Vincent also stressed the importance of the Priesthood for the Catholic community and the greatness of the commitment which the new priests were undertaking:
“You are also to be visible signs of our unity in the person of Christ. You come from such diverse backgrounds and circumstances. Yet today you express that remarkable unity of mind and heart which is such a gift of our faith. You are as one in the life-long commitment you are about to give: a commitment to the people in service; a commitment to the Church in obedience; a commitment to Jesus in love. In the light of this commitment and your service in the unity of the Church, you know that the imposition of personal preferences has no part in your ministry, just as the fostering of personal favouritism must be avoided. All is for Christ, not for self. All is within obedience to the mind of the Church.”
Mgr Mark O’Toole, Rector of Allen Hall, the Diocese of Westminster’s Seminary, said: “It is with great joy and a deep sense of the generosity of God that we celebrate the Ordination of these eight new priests of the Diocese. We give thanks to God for all those – family, friends and parishioners – who have helped to bring them to this important moment. I know that they will be faithful servants of the Gospel and devoted Shepherds of the people to whom they are sent. May their example and witness encourage many more to follow Christ more deeply and to give themselves whole-heartedly in His service.”
Photos of the ordination are available here.
Archbishop Nichols's homily is available here.