Could a father be a priest?


This is a completely made up scenario, but a genuine question. If a man fathered a child out of wedlock, said child was in mother’s custody-could this man become a priest? Or what if the girl aborted the child, could the man become a priest. I don’t mean at the time, i mean if he underwent a conversion and felt a call?


Dear Michelle,

If a man fathers a child, he then has all the responsibilities that any father has for the child he has helped bring into world. Once the child is an adult, then the man may study for the priesthood, all things being equal.

If he had any part in aborting a child—any child, then he may not seek ordination without recourse to the Holy See.

If the abortion took place, but he had no part in it, then it is possible that he could seek ordination after having received absolution and the period of time that he would need to spend in the seminary.

Fr. Vincent Serpa, O.P.

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