Pope Paul VI Sacerdotalis coelibatus:
- In virtue of the fundamental norm of the government of the Catholic Church, to which We alluded above, while on the one hand, the law requiring a freely chosen and perpetual celibacy of those who are admitted to Holy Orders remains unchanged, on the other hand, a study may be allowed of the particular circumstances of married sacred ministers of Churches or other Christian communities separated from the Catholic communion, and of the possibility of admitting to priestly functions those who desire to adhere to the fullness of this communion and to continue to exercise the sacred ministry. The circumstances must be such, however, as not to prejudice the existing discipline regarding celibacy.
Celibacy of priests is a church discipline, it is not a divine law. It is also only the rule of the Latin Church, Eastern Catholics have always had married priests. Therefore, when the Latin Church deems it appropriate, dispensations can be granted to the practice of celibacy.
Over the years the Latin Church has granted dispensations from celibacy towards married Anglican priests who wished to convert and be ordained as Catholic priests. Celibacy is still the norm, thus a convert who is not married must remain celibate to be ordained a priest and if a married minister converts and becomes a priest and his wife dies he is not permitted to remarry. This dispensation to celibacy is also not done in a wholesale manner, each individual case is decided individually.
Pope Benedict XVI Anglicanorum coetibus:
VI. § 2. The Ordinary, in full observance of the discipline of celibate clergy in the Latin Church, as a rule (pro regula) will admit only celibate men to the order of presbyter. He may also petition the Roman Pontiff, as a derogation from can. 277, §1, for the admission of married men to the order of presbyter on a case by case basis, according to objective criteria approved by the Holy See.