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The Rite of Ordination of Priests is filled with beautiful prayers and ritual actions as well as meaningful passages from Sacred Scripture. Those who were present at the Cathedral on May 24, or watched the ceremony on The CatholicTV Network can attest to this.

At one point in the rite, candidates for ordination, one by one, kneel before the ordinary of the archdiocese, Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley. This part of the rite is called The Promise of Obedience.

Here are the directions and text from the ritual: "...Then the candidate goes to the bishop and, kneeling before him, places his joined hands between those of the bishop... ."

The bishop then asks, "Do you promise respect and obedience to me and my successors?" and the candidate responds, "I do!"

The bishop closes this part of the rite with: "May God who has begun the good work in you bring it to fulfillment."

These are words of hope and great expectation. Our nine newly ordained priests are now settling in to their first assignments. Four of the nine are serving in parish collaboratives. They represent 2.5 percent of the 401 Boston priests actively serving in the archdiocese. By far, most active Boston priests are assigned to parish ministry. In the first week of June, more than 90 priests moved to new assignments. The number is staggering and is worth considering.

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