The Joy of the Priesthood Through the Eyes of a Chaplain to a Cloister| National Catholic Register

Father John Rizzo is chaplain to the Tyburn Nuns — the Benedictine Adorers of the Sacred Heart of Jesus of Montmartre, a community of cloistered nuns living according to the Rule of St. Benedict in Parramatta, Australia.  Originally from Boston, he was born one of eight siblings in 1960. Subsequently, Father Rizzo studied for the priesthood under the auspices of the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX). He was ordained by Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre on May 19,1985. However, in 1993, he left the SSPX, which holds no canonical standing in the Church, and entered the Fraternal Society of St. Peter. Since 2012 he has been carrying out his ministry in the Diocese of Parramatta as a diocesan priest. In June 2021, Father Rizzo published his memoirs about his life as a priest. Throughout these pages he recounts anecdotes of his years as a priest, the people he has ministered to and those he has brought back to the Church. It is clear he is a man who has one aim in life: to save souls for Christ. As this short passage demonstrates: “Sometimes the presence of Christ is only realized in their midst in terms of a priest, whose path they may cross. I often travel, and do so wearing my Roman collar so that others recognize that I am a priest. I can recount several occasions where strangers have approached me either to talk about problems that they have, or to make a good confession. I have heard many confessions at train stations and airports. One day when I was on a train platform at Parramatta, within the span of half an hour, three different people came to me asking me to hear their confession. The last one was responsible for me missing my train! Oh well …!”  In the preface of his memoirs, Father Rizzo has this to say: “I love being a priest. In all my years of priesthood, I have never desired to be anything other than a priest. It is an immense honor and joy to be able to bring God to others, and I cannot thank God enough for my vocation.”  This Register interview with Father Rizzo about his book on the priesthood was conducted via email. 

The Joy of the Priesthood Through the Eyes of a Chaplain to a Cloister| National Catholic Register

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