The Beautiful Hands of a Priest

“Without the priest, the death and passon of our Lord would be no use; the priest has the keys of the heavenly treasures… What is the priest? A man who holds the place of God, a man clothed with all the powers of God.”

~St John Vianney

Dedicated to all priests on this day, Thursday of Holy Week, of the institution of the holy Priesthood by Our Saviour Jesus Christ on the eve of His passion and death. The hands of the priest actually become the Hands of Jesus!

“The Beautiful Hands of a Priest” is a deeply moving poem illustrating their significance in the world (though unknown to the world) and the priceless assistance they render to the faithful, especially of how they have the blessed privilege of administering the Sacraments of Holy Mother Church, thus helping us on our way to gain eternal redemption.

The Beautiful Hands Of A Priest

(Author Unknown)

We need them in life’s early morning,
We need them again at its close;
We feel their warm clasp of true friendship,
We seek it while tasting life’s woes.

When we come to this world we are sinful,
The greatest as well as the least.
And the hands that make us pure as angels
Are the beautiful hands of a priest.

At the altar each day we behold them,
And the hands of a king on his throne
Are not equal to them in their greatness
Their dignity stands alone.

For there in the stillness of morning
Ere the sun has emerged from the east,
There God rests between the pure fingers
Of the beautiful hands of a priest.

When we are tempted and wander
To pathways of shame and of sin
‘Tis the hand of a priest that absolve us.
Not once but again and again.

And when we are taking life’s partner
Other hands may prepare us a feast
But the hands that will bless and unite us,
Are the beautiful hands of a priest.

God bless them and keep them all holy,
For the Host which their fingers caress,
What can a poor sinner do better
Than to ask Him who chose them to bless

When the death dews on our lids are falling,
May our courage and strength be increased
By seeing raised o’er us in blessing
The beautiful hands of a priest.


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3 Responses to The Beautiful Hands of a Priest

  1. Mary Anne says:

    Reblogged this on HAURIETIS AQUAS and commented:
    Thank you to all Priests and Seminarians for the awesome gift of your vocation

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you Kathleen! God bless you and may His blessings be upon you abundantly. I never heard of this before and I feel I should have. Now that I know of it I will have to read it again because it is very inspirational and the thought of Jesus actually working through or being present in the hands of the priest is a monumental thought, because it brings Him that much closer to our mere broken earthly lives. I want to share a comment I made with another Catholic woman who blogs like we do. She mentioned how during a trip to the Garden of Gethsemane, Jerusalem, she was surprised when all of the folks there were being tourists and chatting as well as comparing other daily gossips; and surprising was how she expected to see people weeping or at least very solemn but were not. I felt it hit me deeply because what she was expecting is just what I would. I went on to say this. “Everything you expected I would have as well, and in fact if I had visited there I would without a doubt had been crying and gotten on my knees in thanks and sorrow for what I helped do to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! We all carry some of the culpability and responsibility by default just being mere fallen humans. Every Easter for many years now I’ve watched “The Passion of The Christ” film as a personal offering of all my heart to Jesus in a very painful and personal way alone; as anytime I watch that film I go into a kind of shock and sob like a child and feel my guilt along with my sorrow for Him! “I am not worthy but only say the word and I shall be healed.”
    “And the centurion answered, “Lord, I’m not worthy for you to come under my roof. Just say the word, and my servant will be healed.” Matthew 8:8
    That just came to my mind and I’m starting to well up and I want to hold off on breaking down until Easter, to be as strong and committed to Him alone just as He was to His Father in heaven to the best of my ability, to be faithful to the end even unto death; in order to be saved. Everything I said to this point came to me when you said this, “I had expected that perhaps people, overcome with emotion, might be crying.” I didn’t read everything you wrote here until after I thought of this, then once I read, “our spirits are willing, but our flesh is weak.” (Matthew 26:41) You see, how this all dovetails and the Holy Spirit was and is working through us in these writings and the reading of them. Now after reading all of your words I came upon this when I checked into the Scripture to be certain of the exact words. “This is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. Happy are those who are called to his supper.”
    You are right; and I hope everyone reading can see how all of what we are saying here is through our seeking Him humbly on bent knee, and that He always responds, always. This came to me now too, “He sent out his word and healed them, and delivered them from their destruction.” Psalm 107:20 My heart is overjoyed and at peace knowing He loves us this much! AMEN. 🙏 ❤️ 🙏”
    I’m very moved by both her thoughts and yours Kathleen as I prepare for my day of rejoicing in Him on Easter Sunday, but how I also feel obliged to share in His suffering in my little almost nothing way, but nonetheless I feel in this way I do draw closer to Him and hopefully with great humility offer a form of repentance to Him that will allow Him to be stronger in my own heart, I know that when I do this act I’m so overwrought with grief I shudder and continue to sob profusely but feeling my sorrow along with my love for him in a visceral way. In fact I see a correlation of the Priests and their devotion with strict accordance to all that is necessary to be the living hands of Jesus, I in my act will hopefully begin to be as good a servant to Him as I can, finding in time that I grow closer and stronger in my faith and devotion to Him, my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! Thank you very much for this helping “hand” you gave to me here! I’m so humbled by this and I have to say I send out my thoughtful prayers of hope, faith and love to you and yours! Amen. 🙏

    Liked by 1 person

  3. What a wonderful post! Thank you! I just started my own blog on traditional Catholicism, and I was hoping that there would be other sites who are loyal to Holy Mother Church. God love you all!

    Liked by 1 person

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