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In this powerful retreat-in-a-book for priests, Fr. Ezra Sullivan, a Dominican professor at the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas in Rome, reflects on the inestimable gift and responsibility of the priesthood.
Utilizing the examples and teachings of the saints, Fr. Ezra explores how "fathers of souls" should shepherd their flocks with Godï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s self-giving authority and why the Church needs strong, masculine priests to form her children on the road to Heaven. You will learn how to foster devotion to God the Father, how Our Lady is crucial for the sanctification of priests, why St. Joseph is a priestï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s model, and how to employ the angels and the saints to intercede for priests. You will be heartened as you see how Abrahamï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s spiritual fatherhood reveals the spiritual fruitfulness of God and His priests.
You will also learn about the Pelagian temptation and how those who overwork are more susceptible to it; ways to overcome "functionalism" and worldly concerns; and why the Holy Eucharist and administering the sacraments devoutly are central to a priestï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s identity.
Additionally, you will gather spiritual and practical tips on attaining union with the Holy Spirit to avoid "Christian Stoicism" and "spiritual adultery", and you will gain a new appreciation for how priests were raised to a supernatural dignity by virtue of their ordination to act in persona Christi.
Alter Christus squarely looks at common pitfalls of priestly sin, shows how a priest can arm himself for the spiritual battle, and gives tips on how to avoid the trap of self-deprecation or despair over oneï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s sins. You will discover how prayer is necessary for union with Christ and a shield from evil; and how a priestï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s prayer helps to accomplish Godï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s plan for saving the world.
Other absorbing, practical topics covered by Fr. Ezra include:
- The four keys to powerful preaching
- Two virtues to cultivate when combatting a "Messiah complex"
- Why you should never become a "buddy Jesus"
- How love is irreplaceable in a priestï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s life
- St. John Vianneyï¿½ï¿½ï¿½s heroic gift of self and witness of humility as a parish priest
- What Hell will be like for unrepentant and sinful priests
- What Heaven will be like for holy priests