Holy Orders is a sacrament in which men are approved or “ordained” by the Church to perform the other six మతకర్మలు. The men may be deacons, priests or bishops.
అయితే, the sacrament of Holy Orders is performed only by bishops, and that follows directly from the Bible.
There is an established way in Scripture in which God’s call to the ministry is given and received. It flows from God to Jesus, from Jesus to the Apostles, and from the Apostles to their successors (చూడండి లూకా సువార్త 10:16 మరియు జాన్ సువార్త 13:20; 20:21). కాబట్టి, the sacrament of Holy Orders can be performed only by an Apostle or only by one on whom apostolic authority has been conferred. ఉదాహరణకు, Paul writes in his తిమోతికి మొదటి లెటర్ (4:14), “Do not neglect the gift you have, which was given you by prophetic utterance when the council of elders laid their hands upon you” (చూడండి 5:22, తన తిమోతికి వ్రాసిన రెండవ పత్రికలో, 1:6, మరియు అతని టైటస్ లెటర్ 1:5). కాబట్టి, the sacrament follows an unbroken chain from Jesus to today’s newest Catholic priest. (More on this below.)
In the early Church, a hierarchy developed that consisted of bishops, presbyters (or elders), డీకన్లు, which corresponded to Israel’s three-tiered structure of high priest, పూజారులు, లేవీయులను (పాల్ యొక్క చూడండి Phillipians లెటర్, 1:1; సెయింట్ జేమ్స్’ ఎపిస్టిల్, 5:14; బుక్ ఆఫ్ నంబర్స్ అనే, 32; క్రానికల్స్ ఆఫ్ సెకండ్ బుక్ 31:9-10).1 ఇజ్రాయెల్ లో, the priest was seen as God’s unique emissary (చూడండి మలాకీ 2:7), being set apart from the assembly by an anointing and the imposition of hands (చూడండి ఎక్సోడస్ 30:30 లేదా ద్వితీయోపదేశకాండము 34:9).
Given that the Apostles were Jews, the Church adopted these Jewish customs for her rite of ordination.
Aren’t We all Priests?
ఏ, but sometimes people are confused by the Bible’s message that all believers are called to share in Christ’s priesthood. ఉదాహరణకు, Saint Peter’s మొదటి లెటర్ (2:9) రాష్ట్రాలు, “You are a chosen race, రాజ అర్చకత్వం, ఒక పవిత్ర దేశం, God’s own people.” These words are a reference back to ఎక్సోడస్ 19:6, “You shall be to me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.”
Reserving the authority to perform sacraments to a special group of individuals (పూజారులు) is known as sacerdotalism.
In the Old Covenant, a smaller, sacerdotal priesthood existed within the larger priestly nation of Israel. మేము వివరించడానికి వంటి, it is the same in the New Covenant.
The Bible reveals the sacerdotal priesthood to be a kind of spiritual fatherhood, which is why the Catholic Church teaches that priestly ordination is reserved for men alone. ఉదాహరణకు, in the Old Testament, ది Book of Judges (18:19) రాష్ట్రాలు: “మా వెంట రండి, and be to us a father and a priest.”
అలాగే, కొత్త నిబంధన, Paul writes in his కొరింథీయులకు మొదటి లెటర్ (4:15) ఆ “For though you have countless guides in Christ, you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the Gospel.” Paul elaborates more on this spiritual fatherhood or sacerdotal priesthood at the start of that same chapter, when he says, “This is how one should regard us, as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God” (4:1).2
At the start of His ministry, Jesus remarked that the crowds resembled “sheep without a shepherd,” మాట్లాడుతూ, “The harvest is plentiful, కానీ కార్మికులు కొన్ని ఉన్నాయి; pray therefore the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest” (చూడండి మాథ్యూ 9:36, 37-38). These remarks preface His selection of the Twelve Apostles, whom He empowered and sent out as His vicarious shepherds over the faithful (చూడండి జాన్ సువార్త 21:15-17; ది ఉపదేశకుల చట్టాలు 20:28; మరియు పీటర్ యొక్క మొదటి లెటర్ 5:2). “You did not choose me,” He later reminded them, “but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit” (జాన్ 15:16). “How can men preach unless they are sent?” writes Paul in his రోమీయులకు లెటర్, 10:15.
Nowhere in Scripture does a man assume the ministry for himself. “One does not take the honor upon himself, but is called by God, ఆరోన్ కేవలం,” write Paul in his హెబ్రీయులు లెటర్ 5:4 (తన చూడండి Colossians లెటర్ 1:25, కూడా). When certain Jewish exorcists attempt to rebuke evil spirits “by the Jesus whom Paul preaches,” the spirits reply, “Jesus I know, మరియు పాల్ నేను తెలుసు; but who are you?” (ఉపదేశకుల చట్టాలు, 19:13, 15).
కాబట్టి, a valid call to the ministry ordinarily involves the confirmation of the apostolic hierarchy. ఉదాహరణకు, లో Act of the Apostles (1:15), Matthias does not stand up and take his ministerial office by his own volition. He is elected according to the authority of Peter and the Apostles, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Neither does Paul, in spite of his dramatic conversion, set off on his own to preach the Gospel, claiming God’s anointing for himself. As mentioned in his గలతీయులకు లెటర్ (1:18), he goes first to Jerusalem to receive the approval of the Apostles, and later he returns to verify the gospel he is preaching is correct (2:2).
While all Christians are called to evangelize, the Apostles and their successors have the unique call of safeguarding the Deposit of Faith and teaching the faithful. లో మత్తయి సువార్త (28:19-20) Jesus says to the Apostles, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, పితా మరియు పుత్ర మరియు పవిత్రాత్మ వాటిని బాప్టిజంను, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.”
అలాగే, in his తిమోతికి వ్రాసిన రెండవ పత్రికలో, Paul instructs: “Guard the truth that has been entrusted to you by the Holy Spirit who dwells within us,… What you have heard from me before many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.” (శ్లోకాలు చూడండి 1:14; 2:2; 1:13; మరియు ఉపదేశకుల చట్టాలు 2:42).
అసలైన, when His ministers teach it is Christ Himself who teaches through them as He said: “He who hears you hears me, and he who rejects you, rejects me, and he who rejects me rejects him who sent me” (ల్యూక్ 10:16). Elsewhere He declares, “నిజంగా, నిజంగా, నేను మీతో చెప్పునదేమనగా, he who receives any one whom I send నన్ను చేర్చుకొనువాడు; and he who receives me receives him who sent me” (జాన్ 13:20; ఉద్ఘాటన చేర్చబడింది).
The Apostles are given the authority of presiding over the Eucharistic celebration. ఉదాహరణకు, while instituting the Eucharist at the Last Supper, He bids them, “నన్ను జ్ఞాపకము చేసికొనుటకై దీనిని చేయుడని” (ల్యూక్ 22:19 and Paul’s First Letter to the Corinthians, 11:23-24). The Apostles receive a unique share in His priesthood and with it the chief duty of offering the Eucharistic Sacrifice on behalf of the faithful (cf. కలవారు. 5:1).3
The Apostles also receive from Jesus the power to forgive sins through the gift of the keys given to Peter and the authority to” బైండ్ మరియు వదులుగా” conferred on them as a group (cf. మాట్. 16:19; 18:18). “తండ్రి నన్ను పంపినట్లు వంటి,” the Savior tells them, “అయినాకాని I send you. … Receive the Holy Spirit. మీరు ఏ పాపాలను క్షమించి ఉంటే, వారు క్షమిస్తుంది; మీరు ఏ పాపాల పొందగలిగేలా ఉంటే, they are retained” (జాన్ 20:21-23; ఉద్ఘాటన చేర్చబడింది).
- Though the fullness of the apostolic office with all its prerogatives was not passed down, the bishops, as direct successors to the Apostles, remained at the head of the hierarchy. ↩
- The word “mystery,” గ్రీకులో, mysterion, is translated in Latin as sacramentum లేదా “sacrament.” The Greek Orthodox continue to this day to refer to the Sacraments as the sacred “Mysteries.” ↩
- The Biblical view of the Eucharist as a Sacrifice (cf. సమయం. 1:11; 1 Cor. 10:1-5, 15-22; 11:23-30; కలవారు. 10:25-26), నిజానికి, further points to the existence of a sacerdotal priesthood–for the presence of a sacrifice necessitates a priesthood to offer it. పోప్ సెయింట్ క్లెమెంట్, writing from Rome in about the year 96, clearly distinguished between the Eucharistic Sacrifice offered by the ministerial priesthood and the spiritual sacrifices offered by the priesthood of the laity (cf. Clement’s Letter to the Corinthians 40-41). Misunderstanding the Eucharistic Sacrifice, non-Catholics sometimes accuse Catholics of “re-sacrificing” Jesus at Mass. The Eucharistic Sacrifice is not a re-sacrificing, అయితే, but a re-presentation of the one Sacrifice of Calvary. Christ does not die again; His saving Flesh and Blood are made present on the altar under the appearances of Bread and Wine so that the faithful may “proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes” as Paul wrote in his కొరింథీయులకు మొదటి లెటర్ (11:26). ↩