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Archived Online Discussion
Topic: Priests in the Third Millennium
Date: 5-6 pm (ET)
on Thursday, June 25, 2009
Carl Anderson
Supreme Knight
Carl Anderson:
Thank you all for joining us tonight as we discuss Archbishop Dolan's book "Priests for the Third Millennium."

When is Archbishop Dolan going to write another book? Not to extol the man but the Spirit in the man, he is 100% on the money, at least in my opinion.
Carl Anderson:
Well, I am certainly glad that you enjoyed his book, and of course, the Archbishop would have to be the one to tell you when he will publish his next book, but I would like to point out that he has another book "To Whom Shall We Go?" published in 2008 and co-authored a book "The Diocesan Priest, Consecrated and Sent" that will come out next month.

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA
The ch. on Devotion to Our Lady confirms my observation - priests committed to Mary demonstrate a significant presence in holiness. I suspect her relationship with the Holy Spirit is the essence that Mary shares with those whose ministry is run under her mantle. She was chosen for the Incarnation and for the gift of the 1st Pentecost where her gifts in the HS were shared with the 1st priests. I suspect Mr. Anderson dedicated his ministry and the KofC mission to Our Lady for that same presence of holiness.
Carl Anderson:
Certainly devotion to Mary is very important - for priests and lay people. Knights of Columbus are encouraged to pray the rosary, and to keep their rosary beads with them. The reason is this, we have in Mary, the perfect model of evangelization, the model of the great "yes" to Jesus Christ that Pope Benedict has spoken of so eloquently. We are all called to emulate her, to follow her lead in witnessing to her son, and in doing God's will. And on our continent especially, we are blessed with the Virgin Mary in a special way, through the image and message of Our Lady of Guadalupe, whose message of love - given to St. Juan Diego. Her call to love, and her ability to preach God's word so perfectly to those who had never heard it before, is an event not just for the fifteenth century, but for all time. And this is what we will celebrate this year in August in Phoenix at our Guadalupe Festival and Marian Congress. I would encourage you to attend if you can .

Carl Nuss
Nazareth Pa
Just a two comments:

Lumen Gentium tells us that through baptism, we all enter into a common priesthood with Christ.

This book is a must read for all Catholic religious and lay alike, I have no questions, just keep reading and re-reading this book as often as possible and live its teachings.
Carl Anderson:
I think this book is particularly profound precisely because it speaks so well to priest and layman alike. It not only has great lessons for each of us in our own lives, but also gives those of us, who are not priests, an excellent perspective on spirituality, life, challenges and blessings of those how live out a vocation to the priesthood.

Seattle, WA
I’d like to encourage you to expound a bit on the concept that “the grace of God is courtesy”, particularly for those that may not have read this book. It is such a profound yet simple concept I believe it will encourage new readers as well as participants in this discussion to review Chapter 7. Your quote from Mother Teresa “thoughtfulness is the beginning of great sanctity” made it simple.
Carl Anderson:
I think that chapter 7 makes an excellent point. As St. Francis de Sales (a previous book club author) often said, honey is much more effective than vinegar. The fact is that we can tell the truth without resorting to personal attacks. It is worth remembering that Pope Benedict's first encyclical was Deus Caritas Est. Charity is not only helping those in need, though this is certainly very important, Charity also must inform the way we treat one another. It should be the goal of each of us to live up to Christ's call, that we be known as Christians by the way we love one another.

John Thomas
New Rochelle, NY
What would you recommend that members of the K of C take away from their reading of this book? There is so much, and all of it so interesting. Are there one or two things that stood out to you?
Carl Anderson:
The Knights of Columbus has long stood in solidarity with its priests and bishops; in fact, we have striven to be the strong right arm of our parish priests. This book is extremely valuable, both as guide for so many aspects of our own life, and as a means for us to better understand the mission and spirituality of the priests we support. I would encourage each member of the Knights who reads this book to reflect on it with two things in mind. First, how can you apply the lessons it teaches in your own life? Second, what insights can this give you in your support for your own parish priest?

Tom W.
Santa Fe
I have a comment. I was struck by Archbishop Dolan's proposal that priests should go to confession at least once a month.
Carl Anderson:
Thank you for your comment. You raise a good point. Priests administer the sacraments, but they also receive the sacraments, and this insight is an important one. This book is filled with insights that can help us better understand what the ministry of a priest is, as well as helping with lessons for our own life, and you have hit upon a perfect example of this. I would echo what Archbishop Dolan says here, and add that the statement Bishop McNicholas made to him about the importance of priests going to confession each month in order to be a "faithful priest," is something that each of us should strive to do to help us to be a "faithful Catholic." It was just this year that Pope Benedict encouraged all of us to rediscover confession, and if we can have the honesty to take stock of our life and our relationship with God through this sacrament, there is little doubt that we will become better Catholics.

San Antonio, Tx
We hear so much in the media about problems in the Church, but this book seems to provide a great roadmap for priests. Is it used in priestly formation at all?
Carl Anderson:
Certainly this book has tremendous value in terms of formation. And I would add that each of us knows priests who are faithful, holy and truly heroic. The important and faithful work done by the thousands of parish priests, without fanfare, often silently, but always for the good of their people is an incredible testament to the living out by these men of the ideals Archbishop Dolan presents here. It is important to remember - as we begin the Year for Priests - that our priests and bishops - united with the Pope - are critical to the life of the Church, and to our sacramental life. But we cannot expect priests to do everything. Each of us has an important responsibility to support our priests and bishops, and to aid them in their work for the Church.

Juan L.
Phoenix, AZ
One of the chapters in this book deals with love, a topic that you too have written about in two books (A Civilization of Love and Called to Love). Why is love so important?
Carl Anderson:
I think St. Paul put it in perspective when he wrote "Faith, hope, love remain, these three; but the greatest of these is love." Christ told us that the greatest commandment was love of God, and the second was like it, love of neighbor. This is the call and vocation of every Christian, to build what Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI have called so often a "civilization of love." As Archbishop Dolan points out, we must do everything for love, and must foster our love of God through our devotion to the Eucharist and our love for Christ's mother Mary. If each of us took this command to love to heart, we could truly change the world, through our example, one heart and one mind at a time.

Carl Anderson:
Thank you all for joining us tonight. Please join us again next month.

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