Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Oath of Fidelity for New Faculty

Three of our new Faculty members took the Oath of Fidelity before the Seminary Community in the course of the Holy Hour last evening. Monsignor Marc Caron has joined the formation faculty; Father Michael MacInniss, OFM is a new spiritual director, and Janet Benestad is on the Teaching Faculty.

Here is the Homily I preached at Evening Prayer before the Oath was taken.

Psalm 31, which we sand just a moment ago, is one of the simplest of Psalms. "My heart is not proud,” it begins, and ‘my hope is in the Lord,’ it concludes

The oath which Monsignor Caron, Father MacInniss and Professor Benestad are about to take, despite its length, is simple in its substance. I believe, I profess, I will obey. Not man, but God and what he has revealed through Christ Jesus his Son and our Holy Mother of the Church.

Believing in God is a simple thing. A child kneeling beside his bed posits the same trust in his Father in Heaven as he does in his mother and father on earth…in their wisdom, their care for him and their ability to save him. And yet, as Pope Benedict XVI reminds us, this fundamental affirmation of belief “simple in its essence, opens onto the infinite world of relationship with the Lord and with his mystery.”

The faith which is professed by these three good people, is the Apostolic Faith which we have received from the Lord Jesus himself. It is, as the hymn reminds us, “the faith of our fathers, living still.”

It is the faith which each one of you, God willing, will someday profess by the same oath and creed as you prepare to be ordained.

A faith which demands care and fidelity, an adhesion to what has been handed down in its entirety. An obedience to the Bishops, as authentic doctors and teachers of the faith, which fosters communion and unity.

So help you three, so help us all, and God's Holy Gospels on which you will place your hands.