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Priestly identity. (Letters).

* In the NCR article on priestly identity (NCR, April 25), Archbishop Oscar Lipscomb is quoted as having been told years ago that a priest should be holy, healthy and learned.

Curiously, an axiom among Benedictines about to elect an abbot to guide the community suggests they select someone Ne numis sapiens, ne nimis sanctus et ne nimis sanus, someone not too smart, not too holy and not too healthy. The idea being that to be a compassionate, patient and understanding leader, one must be able to commiserate with the companions in their pilgrimage. The history of our flawed organization and the current conditions in the church suggest that neither the clergy nor the hierarchy are above the profanum vulgus, are above the "common crowd." They just think and act like they are.
Blender, Wis.
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Author:Haasl, Edgar
Publication:National Catholic Reporter
Article Type:Letter to the Editor
Date:May 16, 2003
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