Married Priests

Beyond Protestants and the new Anglicans coming into the Roman Catholic Church, which churches have married priests?

Are you asking which Eastern Catholic Churches currently permit married men to become priests, or which denominations of Christianity have married priests and ministers?

Eastern Orthodoxy does.

I think that the churches that have married Clergy within the Catholic Church are the Eastern Rite Churches, such as the Ukrainian Catholic Church, but not in the USA.

We have a married Romanian Catholic priest at our church. Though he might not be typical, as he was married before converting from Orthodoxy.

For the eastern Catholics, it depends upon the territory so to avoid scandal. None of the eastern Catholic churches allow married bishops, but some allow priests to be ordained in the state of matrimony. In traditional Latin territories, it is exceptional.

General rule: all protestant ministers have the option to get married. Whether or not they decide is based mostly on personal choice. The rest of the denominations, it depends on that particular church’s teaching and doctrine.

Unfortunatelly…Some of them even take an extra job, full time, to make better money for the family, and there is no time for spiritual direction. They also might be busy when needed for an urgent confession…
After I saw this, I don’ like this canon.

I’ve never seen this as a problem either for Catholic or Orthodox. A priest taking a secular job really depends more on how a parish can support him financially, then him being married. I’ve seen celibate priests take a secular job because the parish cannot support him financially. And the married priests I know today don’t have an issue with finances as they are supported by their parishes.

Out of interest, do Eastern Catholics or Eastern Orthodox (or any other Catholic related church for that matter), allow priest to marry AFTER they are ordained and receive holy orders?

No. The only exception – and this is exceedingly rare – would be in the case of a married priest who is widowed with young (and I mean young) children. Although I am not personally familiar with any case where this has actually been done, in theory a dispensation could be granted for him to remarry (for the sake of the children).

I’m interested in which non-Protestant churches/denominations/ordinariates/rites allow it.
So far the list is

  1. Eastern Orthodox
  2. Eastern Rite Catholic Apparently this is within their territory or with Papal dispensation if the community is outside their territory.
  3. Anglicans, Episcopal, and Lutherans joining under the Anglican ordinariate.

Any more?

I’ve heard this talked about Roman Catholic deacons. But the Orthodox are very strict about this and there are ancient canons that do not allow this. For the Orthodox, anyone ordained is free to marry/remarry. Just make sure that they are willing to give up their ministry because there is no way they will still be a bishop/priest/deacon/subdeacon after marriage.

The situation in question has absolutely nothing to do with a voluntary divorce and remarriage, but would only apply in the very rare case of a priest with very young children being widowed. In any event, this was already hashed-out recently in another thread, and while I don’t have the patience (or, frankly, the interest) to do a search at the moment, I seem to recall that the principle of oikonomia on the part of the Orthodox was discussed at that time. I’ll let our Orthodox members chime-in on it again as they did last time.

My Father is a priest and always made time for people not matter what he was doing. Does this happen to some priest yes, all of them no.

Lucky priests! The wives of Orthodox priests I know work outside the home, and their income is needed.

I think the section “Economic Challenges” in this article by Fr John Peck “Marriage & the Priesthood” expresses the economic issues well.
From the Good Guys Wear Black website:

Economic Challenges

Finally, it must be pointed out that among the factors that contribute to the eroding of family life, that of economics is a very serious one. **It is generally true that our priests are underpaid. **This is especially the case in small parishes and missions where the income is limited. It is unfortunately the case even in other parishes with large incomes. It is not uncommon for the priests of relatively prosperous churches to have to live on poverty-level salaries. Often this situation is the consequence of uncharitable or unrealistic attitudes toward the clergy: that there is to be found some anti-clericalism among our people is no secret. Some people feel that the priest and his family should be content with far less than the average family. Others imagine that the priests receive gifts and fees for services that more than compensate for their low salaries. Still others think that he and his family do not have the same economic needs as other families.

The psychological and spiritual strains that result from economic anxieties can contribute to the kind of dissatisfaction that produces marital problems. They have already** caused an inordinate number of priests to request leaves of absence, in some cases to seek other employment, and in others, simply to seek relief from the stress related to this problem.**

Clergy compensation has already received some attention in our Church. Some of the dioceses have set minimum standards for salaries, insurance, and various allowances. Yet, parishes do not always comply with diocesan requirements. Much remains to be done in this regard.

It is often necessary for the priest’s wife to be employed, with the result that the roles of husband and wife are reversed. Sometimes it is the priest who holds a full-time secular job. This latter has often been necessary in some of our missionary work, and we should be thankful to God for the willingness of some priests to do this. In many cases they have been admirable and dedicated pastors of their flocks, in spite of the fact that they spend so many hours in their secular jobs.

I fully support the value of the white/married priesthood but I also think people can be very naive about the challenges presented for a married priest and his family.

I don’t know many young Orthodox who are seeking a vocation to the priesthood but of the ones I do know I have heard them and Eastern Catholics young men express serious concerns about the problems these days dealing with debt from school and the need to be married before ordination when in America at least people delay marriage and marry at an older age than they do in the homelands or did here in the West in earlier generations.

The ones I can think of are:

  • PNCC (Polish National Catholic Church)
  • Old Catholics
  • ACoE (Assyrian Church of the East)
  • Oriental Orthodox
  • Eastern Orthodox
  • Catholics, but not in the Latin Church

So if I understand this, you’re making an argument against any men being married, not just priests.

Priests: Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox, Assyrian Church of the East, Most Eastern Catholics, Old Catholics, PNCC, Mariavites, Jacobites.

Priests as exceptional circumstance: Roman Rite Latin Church.
Not really exceptional circumstances: Anglican Use of the Roman Rite in the Latin Church.

Deacons: almost everyone.

So you know that there an no converting married bishops from the Anglicans, Episcopal, or Lutheran’s? Celibacy is mandatory for bishops. Also no new Anglican Catholic priests may be married when ordained, although there have been many converting married priests accepted.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.