Catholic Influencers Podcast with Fr. Rob Galea

EP#11- Priesthood (feat. Fr. Junray Rayna)

April 30, 2019 Season 1 Episode 11
Catholic Influencers Podcast with Fr. Rob Galea
EP#11- Priesthood (feat. Fr. Junray Rayna)
Chapters
Catholic Influencers Podcast with Fr. Rob Galea
EP#11- Priesthood (feat. Fr. Junray Rayna)
Apr 30, 2019 Season 1 Episode 11
FRG Ministry
Show Notes Transcript

Fr. Rob Galea and Danii discuss the history of priests and the reason why the Catholic Church has ordained Priests.
Danii interviews Fr Junray Rayna, the parish administrator from St Kilian’s Parish in Bendigo, Victoria, Australia, on his vocation story and his daily life as a young priest. 



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Speaker 1:
0:07
Hey everybody, welcome to the Catholic influence of podcasts, conversations to help Catholic influences like you and me go deeper and further in influencing our worlds for change. I'm your host father Rob Galea ends on your car. Nice. Danny Sullivan. And we look forward today to talking to you about Catholic priesthood. Nice administration day today at any, we're all in
Speaker 2:
0:39
the office, but yeah, me and Janine are in one of one half of the office and I think you're trying to block us out by going into a separate little room. Yeah, I'm trying to do some way my administration work. I get distracted so easily. I'm like yeah it may. Engineering can be distracting cause we go off topic a lot. Yes, I'm overhearing some of the conversation in the other room thinking when are they gonna work? We work, we're really, we're very productive. And then we just start talking about food and what's on TV and things like that. So what's on TV and what food are you talking about? Well married at first sight is quite big in Australia at the moment. I haven't watched this season, but I mean keeping up to date on, on Facebook. Um, so that's pretty, pretty prevalent actually this morning. Please note that we don't endorse the Sacramento city or anything of it. Maps as I call it naps. It's just kind of like one of those brain dead TV shows where you watch it and you're like, well that's that ton of, of my life gone that I'll never get back.
Speaker 1:
1:35
Well, that's a, yeah, well the good intro into one of the sacraments, sacraments of marriage, but we're going to talk about another sacrament today, which is slightly different topic, which is the sacrament of the, of the priesthood and the Catholic Catholic priesthood. You know, um, one of the things that even myself as a priest is that I can, it's constantly unfolding, trying to understand what the priesthood is, what my role is as a priest. Now it's easy for me to say that I proclaim, um, Jesus through where, than through, through sacrifice. But what does that actually mean? Because you see priesthood is so deep, it's so great. It is actually living in the person of Christ. And the bit to be able to do that. It's just a never ending depth and never ending figuring out of what it means. But priesthood has predated sort of pre-existed, even Christianity, you know, there was a priesthood. It's not a Catholic. We do, let's use the wet views master phenomenon, phenomenon phenomena. But it is, it is something that preexisted even it, there are priests in all types of religions, so priests and priestesses in two days, um, and also [inaudible] and even the pagan weld. In fact, maybe let's look at what the internet says. Miriam Webster.
Speaker 2:
2:55
Yeah. So even according to Google, thanks Webster. I'm a priest is authorized to
Speaker 3:
3:00
perform the sacred rights of a religion, especially as immediate Tory agent between humans and God. So it doesn't actually say anything there about particularly like being a Catholic priest. It's just like priest is a very general thing.
Speaker 1:
3:12
Yeah. But coming to the understanding of priesthood, I think there's a key word there is that immediate Terry. So mediatorial, however you pronounce it, different, but the Australian or American even. And so being a mediator to be a mediator means to be a bridge builder. Someone who builds a bridge between God and humanity. Okay? So God is in a sense unreachable. He's transcendent, it's totally other and so on. We need somehow some kind of bridge between us as a human being and God as the divine, as the, as perfection, us as imperfection, trying to reach God who is perfect. And so I think the mediation, the bridge building is done in three ways. In all religions, not only Catholicism, okay? The priest role as a mediator. Bridge-builder as someone who offers instruction to the people. You know, like even in the old Testament and Judaism, the people were offered instruction.
Speaker 1:
4:10
They were thought the word of God. They were pro proclaim the word of God. That's the first thing. Second thing is sanctifying, the people showing the people how to be Holy, how to be like God. So describing who God is and allowing us to reflect that holiness and wholeness. And then the third thing that a priest always did was offer sacrifice on behalf of the people. So whether it was a blood sacrifice in the old Testament or blood sacrifice, even human sacrifices, some, some pagan gods will would offer. So it is offering sort of this sacrifice on behalf of the people. Even again, this is what happened in Judaism except we didn't have human sacrifices that we had a lambs and cheapened pigeons and or doves. All of these sacrifice on behalf of the people. But it's also different in Christianity. Okay. Because there is, there's only one priest and Christianity, so there aren't several priests in Christianity. There's one, there's one perfect priest. And who is that perfect priest? Jesus. Jesus is that you have to sing that like the Muppets to be able to say that I can actually, I can pronounce that name. Jesus offered instruction. He offered sanctification and example of holiness and he also offered sacrifice.
Speaker 3:
5:29
Yeah. So like you know, and his instruction that he offered was perfect. Nothing that Jesus said is wrong. Everything he said is perfect. It's correct. And it's the, you know, the best instruction that we can receive to be like him in his perfect holiness. You know we're striving for holiness, but he is holiness. He is perfection. And here's what we need to aim for. And then the sacrifice as well. He offered himself on the cross. So if all of that is perfect and there is only one priest in Christianity like you said, then why? Why do we need praise? Slack cheeses is that mediated.
Speaker 1:
5:58
It says that inscription that he is the bridge between us and God. So why is it important that we have priests? Well, yes you're right. You see Jesus is the perfect bridge. He's the perfect bridge builder and through these sanctification, through, through instruction and through his death on the cross, but also he did like you're saying, he Rose from the dead. So why if Jesus is still alive, so why do we have Catholic priests? Why do we have people walking around in black shirts and colors and well the reason there are priests today is to be at this continuous bridge-builder on behalf of Jesus in the person of Jesus. Now this, you have to bear with me cause this can be a little bit complicated. Okay, so Jesus died on the cross. That was his ethic sacrifice. But what we need to do is to bring that bridge to the people, to every generation.
Speaker 1:
6:49
And the way that Jesus planned to do this was by offering the Eucharist. By, by continuing to sanctify us, he instituted the sacrament of the Eucharist, which we call the sacrifice of the mass. Now what happens is that God appointed priests, pointed people to bring that sacrifice to the people to make present the same sacrifice of Jesus on the cross. Now one of the biggest and heresies that has existed is, is still a thing that Jesus, every time we celebrate the mass Jesus is dying on the cross. When that doesn't, that's not the real, that's, that's wrong. Okay? So every time we celebrate mass, what what happens is like we are brought to the same sacrifice of the cross. So it's like, um, the, I'd like to explain it like a Tardis. You know, doctor, who, do you ever watch doctor who, I've never watched it, but I understand that it's a big blue box.
Speaker 1:
7:47
So it goes into the stone. Yes. And then what happens is he is brought to a space and the time, even that he is not present in, so he actually becomes present in this particular space and time. So everyone who participates in the Eucharist is brought to the same sacrifices brought to the cross. So what happens at that moment is that the priest is making present to a sacrament. That's what does the word sacrament means. It's a sign he's making present that same sacrifice on the cross. So the priest is in the sentence, he's the priest at that moment of sacrifice becomes Christ himself. So he becomes the person of Christ. And what does that mean? He becomes the person of Christ in two ways. One, he becomes the sacrifice itself, which is crazy. Okay? And the second thing is the one, he becomes the one who sacrifices, not because he is good or because he is extraordinary.
Speaker 1:
8:43
Because at that moment he re presents Christ who sacrifice themselves, who offers a sacrifice. So Jesus gives himself to the father. And so it is these sacrifice and the one offering, the sacrifice being represented. So in fact limit. I know I'm, I'm, I may have lost some of you here like 10% but the, you know, during mass Jesus is present in how many ways do you know this? Like Jesus is present in the Eucharist, is present in the word, is present in the people, but is also present in the priest. And not because the priest is extraordinary, but because that priest at that moment represents Christ, the person of Christ, the one offering, the sacrifice, but also the sacrifice. And this is what a precisely what the ordained sacramental priesthood does. He represents Christ. He makes Christ steam visible, Christ visible, particularly through the offering of the sacraments and the, you know what the, this is where maybe a priest, a Catholic priest is different to any other priesthood or even Judaism is because in Judaism it depended so much on how good they were and they acted on their own name and they had to offer sacrifices and they had to be set apart and they had to be perfect.
Speaker 1:
10:04
While the priest doesn't act in his own name, he acts in the name of Christ. One of the things I like to do during masses, sometimes it's to give a a mass of instruction. You know, where you explain the mass and one of the things I do is I vest, I dress at the alter because you see this, I tried to explain that the, the, the owl, but that I'm wearing that white garment is, is a garment that hides the priest completely like a baptism or garment where they're no longer seen. But it is the whiteness, the purity of Christ that covers them. It's not their goodness, it's not their strength. It's not even the priest holiness, but it's totally, totally dependent on the sacrifice and the presence of Christ in that sacramental pre-suit I've lost, you know, know I'm keeping up. That was like, it's a love.
Speaker 1:
10:54
But I think that clear, you know, like distinct, you mean the sacramental priesthood like meeting to represent Christ like every single day around the world. He's represented as that bridge. So that by that cross of Jesus or we as you know, just regular humans who are striving for holiness can get to God. And that's true. That. And so the ordained the ministerial priesthood is there to serve the, the ordinary priesthood of the people. So when I was a kid, I was baptized as baptized and the, I was a priest, prophet and King. As a baptized child, I still have the priesthood. Now, the priesthood was not a ministerial priesthood butter. I still had those three roles that all priests have. And that is to give instruction, to receive instruction, okay? To be a witness, as Jesus tells all the baptized. To do that, it was my responsibility also to be an a, a sanctified, to be Holy, to be set apart, and to be an example of holiness.
Speaker 1:
11:51
So there's the sanctification of the people as well, but also to offer a sacrifice. But the sacrifice, the difference there is that the sacrifice I offer is myself as the, the common priesthood. I'm offering a sacrifice of myself. I'm not offering the sacrifice of Christ, the perfect sacrifice. So I'm just like that. But that, that sacrifice on the altar being offered to Christ, that tends to crawl off the alter. And then I need to crawl back onto the altar, which st Paul says, offer yourselves as a living sacrifice. And this is the sacrifice that the common priesthood is to offer. And that is to say that even as a ministerial priesthood, I still need to offer myself as a living sacrifice. I still struggle like everyone else. And that's why I'm so grateful. Even when I celebrate mass, I know even though I tried to be Holy, even though I seek to to be a good example and I seek to be set apart, but I thank God that it is not dependent.
Speaker 1:
12:50
The sacrifice is not dependent on my offering of sacrifice, of, of as a human being, even if I'm imperfect, God is still glorified through the ministerial priesthood. So it looking and having explained all of this, and I know it's complicated, but I think one of the things we need to understand is that we are all called to be priests. We're all called to give instruction. We're all called to be Holy. We're all called to offer ourselves as living sacrifices. But also there's this beautiful, perfect sacrifice that is offered at every mass that is received at every sacrament of reconciliation. You know, that the priest doesn't act on their behalf, they re present Christ and it has nothing to do with them, with the priest's qualifications. But it's everything to do that they are sent in persona Christi in the person of Christ. But one of the things that we do as priest is that we live pretty ordinary lives. I don't walk around every moment with a light around me saying, Hey, look how Holy I am and look how perfect I am. And people admiring and seeing how perfect the precise when it is far, far from that, it's a very ordinary life. Lived quite extraordinarily. And the, in fact we have an interview with my parish priest, your boss, my boss who is five years younger.
Speaker 2:
14:09
I am. Well, so let's say like 43. No, it's like 20 father John Ray who you interviewed Danny and um, get to talk to him about, about his life and what else did you talk to him about? Yeah, it was really interesting. So I've known fathers and Ray for many years, like before he was ordained a priest when he was still in the seminary and he came over from suburb to join an ICS here in Santa. So we're pretty like, well Barry blessed to have him, but we spoke like about that journey a lot. So how it was coming from a huge archdiocese like Subu to little rural Bendigo and Sandhurst diocese. So yeah, really interesting interview and we'll go into that now.
Speaker 4:
15:00
[inaudible]
Speaker 3:
15:00
I'm here today with [inaudible]. You're right by the January is the parish priest or parish administrator here at st Killian's parish in Bendigo. Thank you so much for joining us today. If other than, Hey, I was just wondering if you could start maybe with a bit of your vocation story, I guess. So how did you end up being appraised? So you weren't from Australia, but now you're a parish priest here in Australia. What did that journey look like?
Speaker 5:
15:23
I think faith is primarily, it is given and um, I'm really grateful that one of my greatest influences, my grandma. Um, I received my flight on my grandma, blah blah. I could imagine when I was two or three years old and there's a time that I started going to mass. I think even when I go back to my Mary, I think I've been going to Macedonia probably two or three years old or four years old. And um, we that bouquet with that gift of faith for my grandma, I just thought it's a development and love to the church. And I remember when I was 15 years old, I've met some seminarians in our parish and um, they're so happy bunch in her. They're always very good to the people, the young and old people. And I said I wanted to be like them. Vocation is, we are attracted the same way from Jesus. You know, we are called to Jesus because he so attractive to us.
Speaker 3:
16:16
Cool. So you met these seminarians and then from there did you just join the seminary straight away? Like was it a pretty, an instant thing or did it journey? Yeah,
Speaker 5:
16:23
it took a while. It took a while because I was a young Catholic is in our parish and it was during a summer, summer time that I hang on with his, um, with his guys in a parish. And um, and so that sort of friendship among these young guys who are so dedicated to the parish life sort of community life just, and that friendship guides me through sort of vacation after that. Um, I told my mom and dad about going to summary and I can remember, I think I was 15 years old and in, in the Philippines is really difficult to answer in the San Marquez. And like here in Australia, uh, we are so blessed that the diocese or the Bishop would pay 40 seminary Jews. But in the Philippines it is your family. And around the time, uh, we had a financial problem as well, our family. And um, I remember my mom telling me that you could just, just be a teacher, you'll be happy, you'll be fine. And I said, no, no. Cause I can imagine myself as, as a teacher, I just, I think my heart was just so firey around the time. All I can think of, I just want to become a priest.
Speaker 3:
17:35
Cool. So your, your family lack was struggling financially, you just said. So how did you raise these funds then to enter the seminary so that you could become a priest? Mm,
Speaker 5:
17:44
well I was really amazed by the, the decisions of my mom and dad cause my mom and dad are not really churchy people even though our home is just old minute walk to the church, you know, we could hear the homilies of the parish, reasons why my mom and dad are not going, they don't get to the church quite often, but there are so sacred self sacrificial. The ultimately decided that to sell our home, I was blown away. I was really blown away by that decision that I feel even guilty, why they're doing this for me. And I think that's just tremendous love.
Speaker 3:
18:16
Yeah. That's so beautiful that your parents believed in what you wanted to do so much. They're willing to sell their family home. And then you, so I met you a few years ago when you first came to Australia as a seminarian. So how has this seminary life different I guess from, so Subu Sabato diocese, is that what it's called? Subu diocese. Diocese of supper. Oh, archdiocese of civil. Um, and then you came out to Santos, which is very different. So Subaru's massive, like I dunno what's a population over millions? Probably five, seven millions, so five, 7 million to sand test. And here in Santos diocese in Australia, we're less than a hundred thousand. Catholics were spread across hundreds of kilometers. So what was it like to I guess come from a seminary in Subu to come out to Australia to a very rural diocese?
Speaker 5:
19:03
I remember it was in June of the 10 that I came here in Australia and it was the middle of winter, so I was ah, Oh, that winter just caught me. You fry it? Yeah, it was. And um, and um, I'm very close to my family. I MDL listened to family and, um, I thought around a time that I could just ring my family or Skype them, then I'll be happy with my, you know, I'll just be happy. But the first couple of months I struggled with the homesickness. Um, I'm really, really close and mom and dad and um, and I remember my spiritual director that time, uh, after one month he died too. So I struggled photo first for the first few months and ultimately about the language too, you know. Um, I couldn't, while it's still English and pattern, I don't know. It was [inaudible] same as English if it took me forever to understand and whole slangs and our rector as well in San rake.
Speaker 5:
20:04
He spoke so fast and some of the guys from overseas, we just had no idea what he was talking about. Just not along. Yeah. Okay. That sounds good. Farber. I remember I went to MCAS one time and I ordered a large French fries and a large Coke and his girlfriend, the contrary gave me a large Sprite and a large Coke. Uh, Raleigh. I had a different accent from my French fries, so I just receive it and I don't know how to complain in English around the time so I didn't save it. Oh yeah. But then the brotherhood in summary here is, is quite amazing with, with different nationalities and um, they're very, they're caring to an effort to arrive here, but um, but it's very challenging with all the academic demands. In summary, writing essays in a formal, in our formal essays and all those footnoting and notes and has all of those academic writing, uh, was, was a big challenge when I've, when I started here.
Speaker 3:
21:08
Yeah, absolutely. Say trying to learn the Australian slang, which you're doing pretty, I mean you call it MCAS, so that's a good start. But then trying to write these formal essays, we build a proper language that real English speakers use. That's really beautiful. I've now, you know, you've finished the seminary, you were ordained and now you're the parish administrator for quite a large parish here in Bendigo. What's like, I don't know, I guess a day in the life of a young priest
Speaker 5:
21:33
black, it is really important to have a, a daily prayer because if not, um, I might lose all my energy. And, um, if, if I'm not really well grounded in prayer, I'm, I think I'll be totally lost in the community, in a parish life, in such a big demanding place to ever as central. But I'm really grateful here in here in a community of st Killian's cause I, and the community is very well supporting, a very, um, very supportive of me and I'm very affirming, just couldn't imagine why I'm being put here. But I, I just took that role and, and slowly, slowly being part of the community. Uh, personally, I am really into arts, also am into nature. So most of my Mondays I just climb mountains. So for this to, for just this month, I've been climbing grandparents. I've been to the pinnacle twice this month though. So just yesterday, Andy added eight week. So nature has that sort of deep closeness and me and sometimes if I feel, cause I'm not really a confrontational person. Uh, try to be gentle and humble.
Speaker 3:
22:43
[inaudible] stoner learn from me for I am gentle and humble of heart
Speaker 5:
22:48
and so nature has that power to um, to, to calm me down if I'm really, really struggling in community or in a particular scenario. If I cannot handle, I just go for a walk.
Speaker 3:
23:02
Okay. So if I ever see you walking around Bendigo, I'll assume that you need some extra friends. So that's really like, yeah, I know that you are in decline and you shared that a lot and you actually have big plans next year.
Speaker 5:
23:14
Yes. So, well for the last few years, I mean climbing mountains around Asia. I've been in Mount Kinabalu in Malaysia and monitoring Gianni and volcanic mountain in Indonesia and hopefully to go to the base camp of Everest next year.
Speaker 3:
23:31
Cool. We'll definitely be praying for you in the lead up and when you get there, especially I guess like, you know, you've, you've made priesthoods down pretty beautiful. You know, you're surrounded by this supportive community, you get to go out into nature and do things you love. You've got this brotherhood of people from all the world. And then the priests that Sandhurst is their home diocese as well. So, you know, it's quite joyful. What are, what are some struggles though that you find with being a priest these days?
Speaker 5:
23:55
Um, I think the overwhelming crisis of the church these days, um, I've been talking to a number of young priests and seminarians is they used to, um, especially with the crisis of, you know, the sexual abuses and that's a very draining issue to a lot of us. Especially we're just starting to do ministry. You're the priest end and it could be a really difficult, you know, sometimes we could be just feel just so low with that whole issue and how to move on from that. Tried to communicate each other, come in and have a conversation every now and then we disguised and, but the source of under Saul's of hope to us is indeed our friendship, maleness and friendship among brothers. That in times of crisis like this, we are here to support each other and the same time with the support of, of a lot of people in the community. I remember that at a time of sexual abuses, um, few weeks ago. Um, people are really supportive and prayers and we receive a lot. We received few cards that people are praying for us in the community and so we are really grateful, uh, talk to the community and to the brothers.
Speaker 3:
25:07
That's really beautiful. And that you are supported by your brothers and your parish community as well. Coming from that, where do you see the future of the priesthood in the Australian church?
Speaker 5:
25:16
I didn't see the priesthood in Israel, in church these days. I see the priesthood in universal church and um, I think especially we have a lot of millennial priests these days, young priests, the traveler, wherever and now we are, we belonged to a universal church these days. And here in Australia, in the itself it has, it is composed of 12 or 13 different nationalities. And I see the church in the same way that we belong in a universal church. Our people could with a richness of backgrounds and cultures and heritage or which person can give that, um, rich of precinct as well. So, so here in Australia and the same way in the Philippines or wherever you go, I think we belong in a universal church these days in these modern times. I think there's a lot of positive in there and a optimism index in this whole, in this whole call of to the priesthood and despite all the challenges and track prices of the church.
Speaker 3:
26:19
Because, you know, the Catholic church is a universal church and it's really nice that in modern times, I guess being able to cross borders and share our cultures in a price store is something that is helping that universality of the church shine through. I guess. So we'll finish up here, but I was just wondering if you had any advice for young men who might be discerning the priesthood, what would you suggest for them to do?
Speaker 5:
26:39
Uh, first, um, go to mass. I think it's really important that because we are priests is too to be a lover of the, of the mass. And so go to Mather quite often as much as possible. At the same time, go and be known to your community in your parish community and that prays. The parish priests will guide you in the whole process. He could be your mentor or a good advice or good friend in the whole vocation calls. Good advice.
Speaker 3:
27:07
Thank you so much today for joining us. Father and Ray, it's really great to have your perspective. You're quite a young priest here. You've moved to another country and now you're running an entire parish at such a young age, so thank you for, I guess taking out this call to be a priest. I know that the church is blessed because of it and we'll definitely be praying for you and all your brother.
Speaker 4:
27:29
Wow. Exciting. Thanks. God bless.
Speaker 6:
27:41
Thank you so much for joining us today on the Catholic influences podcast. We hope that you've learned a little bit more about the sacramental priesthood and please join our team as well in praying for the vocation of young men to become priests and also for all our priests around the world. We love hearing from you, so please continue to be in touch with us@frgministry.com forward slash podcast or any of our social media. So Facebook, yes, Instagram
Speaker 5:
28:04
and Twitter at fig ministry. Until next time. God bless.
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