Priest and Marriage


#1

A few days ago I was debating with a cafeteria Catholic about priest marrying, and I decided to write an article about it. The points I'm hoping to make:

  1. A lack of sex doesn't cause prostate cancer.
  2. The Catholic Church can't be held accountable for the sins of weak priest.
  3. Priest are already married to the Church and it wouldn't be fair to his family or his congregation to juggle them both.
  4. Whether or not they should marry, priest have taken a vow of obedience. God first.

I'm looking for sources and maybe some more topics. I'm digging up more verses and such and adding to it as I go.

Advice?


#2

[quote="BabyFang, post:1, topic:199983"]
A few days ago I was debating with a cafeteria Catholic about priest marrying, and I decided to write an article about it. The points I'm hoping to make:

  1. A lack of sex doesn't cause prostate cancer.

[/quote]

better if something came from a doctor, or you can google reliable medical websites to answer this question

[quote="BabyFang, post:1, topic:199983"]

  1. The Catholic Church can't be held accountable for the sins of weak priest.

[/quote]

each person is reliable for his/her own sins. no one else. priests and bishops are people, therefore they sin like people. receiving Holy Orders does not endow them with supernatural abilities to resist temptation.

[quote="BabyFang, post:1, topic:199983"]

  1. Priest are already married to the Church and it wouldn't be fair to his family or his congregation to juggle them both.

[/quote]

priests are not married to the Church

[quote="BabyFang, post:1, topic:199983"]

  1. Whether or not they should marry, priest have taken a vow of obedience. God first.

I'm looking for sources and maybe some more topics. I'm digging up more verses and such and adding to it as I go.

Advice?

[/quote]

priests don't marry because they have taken a vow of celibacy, not obedience
celibacy is a discipline among Roman Catholic priests and not necessarily a dogma or doctrine on Holy Orders. it means that other Rites, such as Eastern Catholic Rites or even Eastern Orthodox (who has valid Holy Orders) would allow married men to be ordained priests. and historically, there were married bishops, even popes, in the Church. celibacy was installed as a matter of discipline for those who wish to serve the Lord.

also, if you're looking for scripture, 1 Corinthians 7:32-33 supports celibacy for those called to serve the Lord:

32But I want you to be free from concern. One who is unmarried is concerned about the things of the Lord, how he may please the Lord;
33but one who is married is concerned about the things of the world, how he may please his wife,


#3

[quote="choy, post:2, topic:199983"]
better if something came from a doctor, or you can google reliable medical websites to answer this question

[/quote]

WebMD and some science articles.

[quote="choy, post:2, topic:199983"]
each person is reliable for his/her own sins. no one else. priests and bishops are people, therefore they sin like people. receiving Holy Orders does not endow them with supernatural abilities to resist temptation.

[/quote]

Agreed.

[quote="choy, post:2, topic:199983"]
priests are not married to the Church

[/quote]

One of our local priests wears a wedding ring because he devotes his life to the Church and her people in the same way a man devotes himself to a wife. I have more for this but it's 3:00 in the morning and I should be in bed.

[quote="choy, post:2, topic:199983"]
priests don't marry because they have taken a vow of celibacy, not obedience
celibacy is a discipline among Roman Catholic priests and not necessarily a dogma or doctrine on Holy Orders. it means that other Rites, such as Eastern Catholic Rites or even Eastern Orthodox (who has valid Holy Orders) would allow married men to be ordained priests. and historically, there were married bishops, even popes, in the Church. celibacy was installed as a matter of discipline for those who wish to serve the Lord.

[/quote]

My point being that a priest is also bound by his vow of obedience.

[quote="choy, post:2, topic:199983"]
also, if you're looking for scripture, 1 Corinthians 7:32-33 supports celibacy for those called to serve the Lord:

32But I want you to be free from concern. One who is unmarried is concerned about the things of the Lord, how he may please the Lord;
33but one who is married is concerned about the things of the world, how he may please his wife,

[/quote]

Thanks, :)


#4

I'd like to point out that only priests in religious orders make vows, while diocesan (secular) priests make promises instead. See this thread for reference.

I think one issue that came up in the past was inheritance. Since clergy who do not make a vow of poverty are able to own personal property, in the event of the priest's death, his heirs would have a claim to it and ownership would pass out of the Church. On a related issue, housing a single man is much easier, several of them can share quarters, but a family needs their own space.

The most important thing to emphasize, when the topic arises of sinners in the Church, that the Church is guided by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and derives grace not from any human power but from God and the seven sacraments which Christ gave for our sanctification. The Bible, Holy Tradition, and the Magisterium are all the product of human sinners, but free from error in faith and morals through the working of the Holy Spirit. [BIBLEDRB]Matthew 16:18[/BIBLEDRB]


#5

[quote="BabyFang, post:3, topic:199983"]
One of our local priests wears a wedding ring because he devotes his life to the Church and her people in the same way a man devotes himself to a wife. I have more for this but it's 3:00 in the morning and I should be in bed.

[/quote]

What you are trying to do is wonderful, but at the same time it's important that our apologetics be accurate. Theologically speaking, priests are not married to the Church. Your priest may wear a wedding ring as a symbol of devotion, or as a practical means of discouraging flirting from women. However, to defend priestly celibacy by saying that priests are married to the Church is theologically wrong.
This article may help you in your defense of clerical celibacy.

[quote="BabyFang, post:3, topic:199983"]
My point being that a priest is also bound by his vow of obedience.

[/quote]

The vow of obedience the priest takes is a vow of obedience to his bishop. Obedience has to do with helping the bishop in doing the work of the Church. Here is an article by Fr. John Hardon about priestly humility and obedience. The second half of the article addresses obedience and is good reading (as are all of Fr. Hardon's articles.)


#6

The priest does not own Church property. Nothing Church-owned could be in his will because it belongs to the people.


#7

[quote="BabyFang, post:3, topic:199983"]
WebMD and some science articles.

[/quote]

i guess. i just don't want to make a comment on a medical condition that i know nothing about

[quote="BabyFang, post:3, topic:199983"]

Agreed.

One of our local priests wears a wedding ring because he devotes his life to the Church and her people in the same way a man devotes himself to a wife. I have more for this but it's 3:00 in the morning and I should be in bed.

[/quote]

this is a nice gesture to symbolize his commitment to the Church
i'm just stating the technical aspect of it, that priests are not married to the Church. the Church is the bride of Christ, not of the priest. even if a priest acts in persona of Christ, he is not Christ

[quote="BabyFang, post:3, topic:199983"]

My point being that a priest is also bound by his vow of obedience.

[/quote]

to be very technical about it, he is bound by the vow.

Thanks, :)


#8

[quote="Elizium23, post:4, topic:199983"]
I'd like to point out that only priests in religious orders make vows, while diocesan (secular) priests make promises instead. See this thread for reference.

[/quote]

i thought the vow of celibacy is universal to all priests in the Latin Church
interesting
i do know that diocesan priests do not have a vow of poverty, my parish priest told us that as he's a diocesan


#9

[quote="Spirithound, post:6, topic:199983"]
The priest does not own Church property. Nothing Church-owned could be in his will because it belongs to the people.

[/quote]

agreed, i think the point was personal property. our parish priest is diocesan and he owns his own car for example. its paid from his salary (or perhaps a gift from his family, i don't exactly now, but its his) so if he dies the car is not Church or Parish property, and would go to a relative or a person of his choosing


#10

I thought that only bishops could wear such rings.


#11

[quote="choy, post:9, topic:199983"]
agreed, i think the point was personal property. our parish priest is diocesan and he owns his own car for example. its paid from his salary (or perhaps a gift from his family, i don't exactly now, but its his) so if he dies the car is not Church or Parish property, and would go to a relative or a person of his choosing

[/quote]

Right, but if the priest bought the car himself, it is his own. In no way is the Church "losing" anything out of the deal.

Maybe things were different back then, but I seriously can't see how that might have worked.


#12

The Church ordains married men to the priesthood, mainly the Eastern Catholic Churches, but the Latin Catholic Church also dispenses from the discipline of celibacy for converting ministers at times.

Also, secular priests to not make vows, they make promises of celibacy and obedience, not vows.

Religious make vows. The vows are of Chastity, Obedience, and Poverty. Religious can not marry nor be married when they make their vows as celibacy is part of religious life.

Priests are not married to the Church as has been stated.


#13

You can also look at this Article which I don’t fully agree with it but you may get good points
Densy


#14

Totally unsourced assertions follow! I was unable to find authoritative citations for these historical events, so take them with a grain of salt.

In the early centuries of Catholicism, it was commonplace for priests to be married and have families. Many also had mistresses or women living with them out of wedlock. One of the sixth century popes, Pope Pelagius I made a ruling that all newly ordained priests had to agree that their sons could not inherit church property (daughters at this time in history had no right of inheritance). A later Pope, Pope Gregory, made a blanket declaration that all sons of priests were now illegitimate, thus disinheriting any son of a priest from that time on. In 1022 Pope Benedict VIII banned marriages and mistresses for priests and in 1139 Pope Innocent II voided all marriages of priests and all new priests had to divorce their wives before ordination. The influence of the Gnostic sect, who taught that the body was filthy and unspiritual, and that one could only attain greater spirituality and communion with the Almighty by living a chaste, celibate life, is thought to have played a major role in the adoption of celibacy as the norm for Catholic clergy.


#15

Yes, please take it for what it is worth - a copied and pasted text from an unreferenced and unsourced website.

The inaccuracies in this quotation would take me multiple paragraphs to correct - and I do not have the time.

Here is a better place to go for the history of clerical celibacy in the Church:

vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cclergy/documents/rc_con_cclergy_doc_01011993_chisto_en.html

Note it is on the Vatican website.


closed #16

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