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Mass Marks Year for Priests in Diocese

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The Most Reverend Michael F. Burbidge, Bishop of Raleigh, marked the opening of the Year for Priests with a Mass celebrated at Sacred Heart Cathedral on Fathers Day, Sunday, June 21. Concelebrants at the Mass were the Most Reverend F. Joseph Gossman, Bishop Emeritus of Raleigh, and the Reverend Salvatore Busichio, Parochial Vicar at Sacred Heart.

Pope Benedict XVI has proclaimed June 19, 2009 to June 19, 2010 the Year for Priests , a worldwide celebration, which the Holy Father said should help priests “rediscover the grace and the goal of priestly ministry.” In his homily on Sunday, Bishop Burbidge said that “nothing can be more important in the life of the priest than to grow in his intimate relationship with the Lord, the One who has called us, anointed us in His very person and sent us forth in His name. This Year is a time for priests to rekindle priestly holiness, integrity, joy and zeal.

“To respond,” the Bishop continued, “we depend on God’s grace and the support of you, my brothers and sisters in Christ.” He asked that all the faithful in the Diocese “renew the commitment to pray daily for priests, as individuals and as a family.” Following the homily, the Bishop and the congregation prayed the Diocesan Prayer for Priests, which was distributed at the Mass.

That prayer is one of the resources available on a special Year for Priests Web page, which can be accessed by clicking on the Year for Priests button on the home page of our Diocesan Web site. Throughout the Year for Priests , the page will bring the faithful information about Diocesan events, spiritual resources and stories to observe this special Year.