“ ‘aˆ¦I am a bad priest and a bad adult male ‘ ” ( Greene 126 ) . In Graham Greene ‘s The Power and the Glory, the chief character, an nameless priest, admits that he is a bad priest. The reader first encounters the priest when the priest is waiting for a boat to Vera Cruz because he is on the tally from the constabulary. The fresh takes topographic point during a clip when the province is seeking to extinguish Catholicism. At first, the priest seems like a devoted Catholic who is merely seeking to distribute his religion and aid others. However, the priest does non put the greatest illustration for fellow Catholics ; in fact, Greene sometimes even refers to him as a “ whiskey priest. ” He spends a batch of clip in a province of self-pity. He examines his determinations and actions and realizes that he is in a province of mortal wickedness ; nevertheless, he does nil to alter his state of affairs. Not merely does he hold an intoxicant dependence, but he besides commits criminal conversation. By the terminal of the novel the priest grows in his ain relationship with God ; nevertheless, he does non put a good illustration for other Catholics. A priest should endeavor to give counsel and aid to others, particularly during a clip when governments are seeking to eliminate faith. Although the priest seems to turn strongly in his religion by the terminal of the novel, he exemplifies a bad priest.
Throughout the novel, the priest admits to himself and others that he has committed grave wickednesss ; nevertheless, he does non try to rectify his errors. Early on, Graham Greene reveals that the priest commits criminal conversation about six old ages prior to the novel ‘s scene. This sedate wickedness consequences in Brigitta, the priest ‘s illicit girl. When mentioning to his act of criminal conversation he admits that “ fright and desperation and half a bottle of brandy and the sense of solitariness had driven him to an act which horrified him ” ( Greene 66 ) . Although he knows he has done incorrectly, the priest can non halt believing about his bastard girl all through the novel. When his executing is at hand, he finds that he can non atone for this wickedness. In add-on, his love for his girl leaves him incapable of praying for anyone else, “ but in the minute of supplication he switched back to his childaˆ¦and he knew it was for her lone that he prayed ” ( Greene 208 ) . His wickedness distracts him from his hieratic responsibilities, and he is unable to inquire forgiveness. The priest besides has a really noticeable imbibing job ; in fact, other characters sometimes refer to him as “ the whisky priest. ” He often carries a bottle of brandy while he is on the tally from the governments. When he must lose a boat to Vera Cruz to assist a male child and his female parent, he says, “ ‘Give me the brandy, ‘ ” and so “ he [ takes ] a long pull at it ” ( Greene 17 ) . The priest drinks a significant sum of brandy before be givening to a deceasing adult female. It seems that he needs intoxicant to assist him go on his hieratic responsibilities ; a priest should non necessitate intoxicant to assist him follow his responsibilities. He continues to imbibe overly, even on the twenty-four hours before the governments execute him ; “ without believing what he [ is ] making, he [ takes ] another drink of brandy ” ( Greene 207 ) . The priest realizes that he has a imbibing job ; nevertheless, he does non try to repair it, and he continues imbibing until the forenoon of his executing. A “ whiskey priest ” that can non atone for perpetrating criminal conversation is non a good priest.
When the priest performs a good title, he normally does so with reluctance ; he acts as though person is coercing him to transport out a good title. When a male child asks the priest to assist his deceasing female parent, he does non desire to travel, “ but [ he ] [ gets ] up as though unwillingly he [ has ] been summoned to an juncture he [ can non ] base on balls by ” ( Greene 16 ) . Reluctantly, as if he has no pick, the priest agrees to attach to the male child back to his house. As he leaves he says, “ It ever seems to go on. Like this ; ” this implies that he ever seems to acquire pulled back to his hieratic responsibilities unwillingly ( Greene 16 ) . The word “ ever ” indicates that the priest has responded to a similar state of affairs in the same mode. It is good that the priest finally decides to assist the male child ; nevertheless, it does non look really priest-like to be so loath when a state of affairs like this occurs. The “ whiskey priest ” sometimes finds himself believing that he has made the incorrect determination in going a fleeting. At times, he thinks that it may hold been more good to follow Padre Jose ‘s illustration and resignation to the province ‘s demands. Near the terminal of the book, when the lieutenant captures him, the priest begins to believe about the hurting that is in shop for him, and admirations if it is excessively late for him to abdicate his priesthood like Padre Jose. He mulls over the fact that the governments have non given him a opportunity to abdicate his religion ; “ possibly if he suggested it himself, he would get away yet ” ( Greene 209 ) . The priest declinations declining the province ‘s conditions sing his religion. It is good that the priest evades apprehension and efforts to assist people ; nevertheless, he does so reluctantly, which gives the feeling that he takes no joy in assisting others if it is inconvenient for him.
Regardless of the religious realisations that the nameless priest has, his actions and determinations indicate that he is a bad priest. He sets a bad illustration for anyone that looks to him for counsel ; he even admits this multiple times throughout the novel. He is far from being an model priest, which is person that that observes his vows and follows the commandments. It is impossible, of class, to be perfect ; nevertheless, the priest makes a weak effort at being a good priest. He has a changeless sense of self-pity and inutility. He even refers to himself as a bad priest and a bad adult male. After acknowledging his wickednesss of imbibing and criminal conversation, he should be able to subject wholly to God and repent. His bastard kid prevents him from inquiring forgiveness for perpetrating criminal conversation, and he does non even try to halt imbibing. Although he tries to execute his hieratic maps whenever possible, his changeless wickedness sets a bad illustration for people who might look to martyrs for inspiration. The adult female who the priest has an matter with says, “ Suppose you die. You ‘ll be a sufferer, wo n’t you? What sort of a sufferer do you believe you ‘ll do? It ‘s adequate to do people mock ” ( Greene 79 ) . The nameless adult male sets a bad illustration for others and is a bad priest.