Father Mark Barr, newly ordained for the Archdiocese of Boston, on what it means to be a priest:
A priest is not a set of actions, sacramental or otherwise, though certainly there are proper and necessary actions for the priest. Priesthood is not a job or a career, not a set of functions or tasks, but rather a commitment of one’s entire life to a privileged relationship with Christ for, and only for, the service of God’s holy people.
A priest is most a priest in the quiet, hidden moments of his day when he is confident in his identity as alter Christus, consoled by his sacramental proximity to the fountain from which graces flow, and humbled before the God who chooses men to be his representatives and instruments in the world. Actions flow from the center of a priest’s identity, they do not constitute it.