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The Priesthood

Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking care of it, not by constraint, but willingly, according to god; not for filthy lucre's sake, but voluntarily. ...And when the prince of pastors shall appear, you shall receive a never fading crown of glory.

St. Peter, First Epistle 5:2, 4, c.45

No priest of the Lord is free to be ignorant of the statutes of the Apostolic See.

St. Siricius, Letter to Bishop Himerius of Tarragona,
February 11, 385

Now the Lord Jesus...desired that the Church, whose Bridegroom He is, should have her visage shining with the splendor of chastity....Hence all we priests and Levites are bound by the unbreakable law of those instructions to subdue our hearts and bodies to soberness and modesty from the day of our ordination, that we may be wholly pleasing to our God in the sacrifices which we daily offer.

St. Siricius, Letter to Himerius, Bishop of Tarragona,
February 10, 385

No one does more harm to the Church than he, who having the title or rank of holiness, acts evilly.

St. Gregory I the Great, Pastoral Care, c. 590

Be zealously affected to command in all the churches the pure tradition be held.

St Agatho I, Letter to the Third Council of Constantinople,
November 15, 680

I command you to apply yourself with more energy to preaching and enforcing the celibacy of the clergy according to the edicts of the Fathers.

St. Gregory VII, Letter to Hanno, Archbishop of Cologne,
March 29, 1075

See that the bounds of common sense are not exceeded, however, for common sense is the guide of the virtues.

Innocent IV, Quae Honorem Conditoris Omnium, October 1, 1247

Carefully investigate the directors given charge of boys and young men in seminaries and colleges, and the courses they are to follow, the teachers chosen for secondary schools, and the schools which are to be run. Keep out the ravening wolves who do not spare the flock of innocent lambs, and expel them if necessary by the way they entered.

Pius VII, iu Satis, May 15, 1800

Venerable Brethren, of what nature and magnitude is the care that must be taken by you in the forming of the clergy to holiness! All other tasks must yield to this one.

St. Pius X, E Supremi, October 4, 1903

Remember that your duty is not the extension of a human realm, but of Christ's; and remember that your goal is that acquisition of citizens for a heavenly fatherland, and not for an earthly one.

Benedict XV, Maximum Illud, 1919

The Church, to a great extent, derives Her vigor, Her apostolic zeal, and Her fervor in seeking holiness of life, from the flourishing condition of Her Religious Institutes.

Paul VI, Address to the General Chapters of
Religious orders and Congregations, May 23, 1964

Priestly celibacy has been guarded by the Church for centuries as a brilliant jewel, and it retains its value undiminished even in our time when the outlook of men and the state of the world have undergone such profound changes.

Paul VI, Sacerdotalis Caelibatus, June 24, 1967