.- The secretary of the Congregation for the Clergy, Archbishop Mauro Piacenza, said this week the proclamation of the word of God is an undeniable task that priests must carry out with dignity and wisdom, to show Christ to others. It is a mission that leaves no room for subjective views of the Lord or relativism, he said.
In an article published by L'Osservatore Romano, the archbishop said, "No priest proclaims himself or his own ideas, nor his personal or subjective interpretations of the one and eternal Gospel.â
Carrying out this labor with dignity requires engaging people's hearts, since that is where true knowledge of the Scriptures originates. This knowledge comes âfrom daily intimacy with Him, from lectio divina, as part of the great tradition of the fathers, from deep meditation that gradually transforms each priest into a âliving Gospel,ââ the archbishop said.
âWe know well,â he continued, âthat the âGospel is not only words, Christ himself is the Gospelâ and we are called to be conformed unto Him, through the exercise of the ministry of proclamation as well.â
Speaking later about the need for âwiseâ preaching, Archbishop Piacenza recalled that this âpresupposes prudence and the capacity to see reality according to the totality of its factors, without absolutizing any one human point of view, but rather always referring everything to the only absolute who is God.â
âWise preaching always considers first the real demands of those who receive it, never imposing arbitrary and insufficient interpretations, but rather always preferring the one true thing that is necessary: the real encounter with God of those entrusted to our care,â the archbishop reminded priests.
Wise preaching means âbeing always aware of the work of God in each proclamation: it is He who prepares the hearts, it is He who encounters men, it is He who brings forth the flowers of conversion and ripens the fruit of charity,â he continued.
âThe only ârelativismâ allowed is that which is directed towards oneâs self,â the archbishop noted. âAs preachers, we must always be totally ârelativeâ (related) to God.â
In this way priests will discover the beauty of their ministry and will sense the intimate presence of the Lord, âwho loves those who give with joy and never leaves His servant alone,â wrote the Vatican official.