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With the scarcity of priests and the gap between the people and their priests within the regular parochial system, I wonder if anyone here has much "face to face" contact with their priests, at least those within the "Novus Ordo" Church? I always see the people rushing out after mass and the priest rushing to the sanctuary. There's not much personal contact anymore, also the house visits must have ceased alltogether.

What about those of you who strictly (and rightly so, I might add) visit FSSPX/FSSP chapels? Do you speak much to your priest?

Is such personal contact with the priest, just to know his opinions and such and what not, even wanted by you?

Archangelum Wrote:With the scarcity of priests and the gap between the people and their priests within the regular parochial system, I wonder if anyone here has much "face to face" contact with their priests, at least those within the "Novus Ordo" Church? I always see the people rushing out after mass and the priest rushing to the sanctuary. There's not much personal contact anymore, also the house visits must have ceased alltogether.

What about those of you who strictly (and rightly so, I might add) visit FSSPX/FSSP chapels? Do you speak much to your priest?

Is such personal contact with the priest, just to know his opinions and such and what not, even wanted by you?


FSSPX/FSSP - Yes, we communicate consistently and constantly, he's and extremely balanced and even handed gentleman with great knowledge of classics, the church fathers, theology, etc... and he has an excellent ability to connect logically and cohesively everyday life with Catholic theoligical truths and certitudes.  He's a breath of fresh air for those of us who are irritated by the emotional rantings of individuals that claim to be mentally organized.
At the SSPX chapel that we attend, Father comes out after every mass and talks to everyone and makes a special point to introduce himself to new faces that may have shown up that week.  My family takes him out to breakfast at least once a month and it is not out of the ordinary to have him over for dinner if he is not otherwise busy.  He is very accessible and we thank God for having him as our priest.
My priest stands at the door after Mass to greet everyone on their way out.

I think that in these times, it's good to have a personable, easily accessible pastor... but in earlier times like the High Middle Ages, as I hinted at in another thread, priests were not affectionately addressed as "Father", but as "Sir" or "Lord" like a part of a separate social class. Clerics weren't expected to show up to peasant families' huts for dinner, or other quaint little practices like that. I sometimes subconsciously prefer that.
My Priest is kept very busy so when I need to communicate with him, we play phone tag. I call and leave a message, he calls back and leaves me one.
The_Harlequin_King Wrote:My priest stands at the door after Mass to greet everyone on their way out.

I think that in these times, it's good to have a personable, easily accessible pastor... but in earlier times like the High Middle Ages, as I hinted at in another thread, priests were not affectionately addressed as "Father", but as "Sir" or "Lord" like a part of a separate social class. Clerics weren't expected to show up to peasant families' huts for dinner, or other quaint little practices like that. I sometimes subconsciously prefer that.

I understand why you would wish that, as a renaissance man myself I enjoy most aspects of the middle ages and the art, culture, practices, etc of the time.  This is purely my opinion but I must say that I prefer being able to converse and discourse with my pastor.  I find it intellectually refreshing.

My parish (weekly TLM, also has NO) is so small, but one can't help but commuicate with the pastor.  He is very accesible.  At other local TLM's, the priests are very friendly and usually stand in outside the church after Mass.

 

Christina

Archangelum Wrote:
What about those of you who strictly (and rightly so, I might add) visit FSSPX/FSSP chapels? Do you speak much to your priest?

Is such personal contact with the priest, just to know his opinions and such and what not, even wanted by you?


It's been this poster's limited experience that NO priests are friendly in the beginning, but this it ends at a point. Not that the men become jerks or anything, but rather that the friendliness is does not readily develop into an actual relationship. Society priests on the other hand - limited experience remember - are much more stand-offish on the surface (compared to NO priests they can come across as downright cold). Yet if one regularly attempts to become involved in parish life, the priest gets to know you. More than anything, this likely has to do more with training various priests receive in seminary rather than character or personality differences.

This poster was floored when he was asked to teach in the parish school, thinking the priest barely knew his name. When I took a double-take, and asked how this could be, I was simply told, "Father knows his people." Indeed he did.
You know, I don't think it was a priest but when I called the local chapel to ask if there was a priest in residence, whoever picked up the phone was really rude. It just turned me off... I'm used to calling Novus Ordo were you can hear the smile on their face.

EDIT: It may have had to do that I called at eight in the evening. I wasn't expecting anything but a recording.
If the parish is smaller, there are closer ties between priest and people, and also among the parishioners themselves. Our parish is large, and half the people don't even know each other. I'd say that's true of most large parishes.  The pastor tries to be on a first-name basis with his parishioners, so he can at least call them by name when he shakes their hand in the back of church after Mass. He maintains good relationships with parishioners who make themselves visible, such as VOLUNTEERS (a parish is paralyzed without them). A priest especially has good relationships with people who attend daily Mass.  Even tonight, our pastor is cooking dinner at the rectory for 10 people on the Finance Committee and their wives. He often gets together with parishioners to play cards and drink beer.. But note that it's always within a group setting..and the purpose for getting together is always two-fold, as in discussing the financial issues of the parish, fundraising, the school etc.  For a priest should avoid too much familiarity. He's in a difficult spot because people are often jealous and possessive of the pastor (even if they don't know him well). If some get too "chummy" the rumors fly. I've worked in parish life (diocesan) now for 20 years - I've seen 4 pastors come and go. They usually maintain solid, personal and lasting friendships with other priests. They try to avoid parish cliques. Further, I am the pastor's secretary, and even I keep a respectable distance. St. Therese of Lisieux said that it's better for a person to refrain from familiarity with priests. She's absolutely right. Especially if that person is female.   - Lisa
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