This is a thread to express thanks, devotion, care and love for your priests, including sharing happy stories, teachings, lessons and any other types of true Catholic devotion to those who have sacrificed their lives for others by accepting Gods call to them.
Nice idea for an uplifting thread.
I rather like the custom at old churches here in PA of burying the pastors on the front lawn of the church. Zoning has made that illegal in most places for many decades, so the graves are from many decades ago. I did not know who the priest was buried on the front lawn nearest me so I asked on a community group and a lot of older people shared their memories of the priest, who was pastor when they were little children at the parish school. Once I had his name, I looked him up and found lots of interesting stuff about him, including that he had written several devotional books, and that when he was a young priest he was hit by a train trying to grab his hat that had blown onto the train tracks. He got away with just a few fractures, which was quite lucky.
So when I enter or leave church I always say, Monsignor _____, pray for us. I also include the name of his successor, who the older people told me they tried to bury on the lawn also but by then the city fathers wouldn’t allow it, so he is under the big crucifix at the Catholic cemetery on the edge of town. And then I add in the names of the memorable pastors of my last two parishes and another pastor I learned about who served a couple miles away down the street and ask them all to pray for us as I walk to my car.
Before the pandemic, when a priest gave a more excellent homily than usual I would always say a special thank you to him.
Another time I invited a priest to dinner and my daughter, son-in-law and their two young boys were there as well. The boys, about seven and ten years old were all excited and we all had a great conversation together.
@Dorothy Very generous of you to offer dinner, as I hear that many priests do not always have time for a nice hot meal. I’m sure he loved your family. What did the boys want to talk about?
Jesus gave me a lovely grace the other day in the form of a memory. I think he wanted some more thanks. A while back I had to leave my church. I found another church, but the pastor there went on vacation just as I arrived, so I had to hop around for daily Masses for two weeks. All of those churches locked after Mass, so I couldn’t spent my wonted time in adoration. That on top of the reasons I had to leave felt like God had completely rejected me.
Finally I went to Mass at a church with an adoration chapel, screwed up my courage, walked back to the sacristy after Mass, explained my situation with way too much information because I was so scared to be within twenty feet of a priest, and asked for the code to the chapel. Just for one week, until the new church opened again. Before I had even made it to asking the question, the priest was already reaching for a pen and writing the code. When I finished talking he handed it to me and said, “Use it as long as you want. We like it when people pray.” I learned a few minutes later that the chapel was located in a large building full of tastefully-appointed rooms (and a commercial kitchen) that weren’t locked up. The priest had just handed me a key to all of it. Even though he didn’t know me from a rock!
My family has been at that parish for over two years now. The priest also turned out to be a wonderful confessor and spiritual advisor. Faults and failings? Oh, absolutely. Alter Christus? Yes, yes, yes.
I’ve found a simple “thank you” can go a long way, and that an encouraging note can be appreciated. Prayer, of course. If one engages in fasting as a spiritual practice, offering it for his benefit is a kind thing to do. (And whatever you do, never hide the cookies from the priest!)
There will never be enough thanks for me to give, no, never.
For the priest that I attend Mass at, for his unfaltering perseverance and care for souls by having a live Mass every day during level 4 lock down. Giving wonderful homilies. Absolutely amazing and very much working for God.
@TheHolyTrinity How many do you know would really, actually, give their very lives for you and for others?
Giving the sacraments during this pandemic is purely heroic!
NOT bragging but just sharing, I have written about 250 or so, Thank You notes to every Priest in our Diocese and other Priests throughout the world. I do this anonymously to just Thank them and tell them how blessed we are to have them serve as Priests in our Church. Once Seminarians are ordained I send them a Thank You note. They need to know they are appreciated, prayed for supported and loved. Without them we have no Sacraments, no Mass and no Eucharist. We need them and they need our prayers.
@CajunJoy65 Thant is so beautiful and generous! That’s not bragging, but helping with ideas for showing them thanksgiving and I’m sure what is often badly needed moral support!