VATICAN CITY – Pope Benedict XVI ordained 22 men on Sunday in St. Peter's Basilica, including the son of the man who has been the Vatican's official photographer for decades.
Juan Carlos Mari was ordained as a member of the Legionaries of Christ, a conservative religious order, the order said. His father Arturo has been taking photographs of pontiffs on pilgrimages and during ceremonies for decades for the Vatican's official newspaper L'Osservatore Romano. The elder Mari was among the faithful in the pews on Sunday.
Benedict called for prayers for the new priests to persevere in their ministry and remain faithful.
He also asked for prayers for more vocations for the priesthood. The Catholic Church has seen candidates for the priesthood decline in parts of the West, and far-flung parishes in developing countries are sometimes short of priests.
At one point in the ceremony in St. Peter's Basilica, the men prostrated themselves on a carpet in front of the central altar.
Wearing simple white cassocks, they replied one by one, "Here I am," as their names were called out.