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Bishop tells parishioners to prepare for fewer priests
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette ^ | Friday, September 17, 2004 | Ann Rodgers

Posted on 09/17/2004 8:36:25 PM PDT by Land of the Irish

Bishop Donald Wuerl is calling on the people of the Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh to prepare for a future with fewer priests.

"Fewer priests does not mean less ministry," Wuerl wrote in a pastoral letter in this week's Pittsburgh Catholic.

(Excerpt) Read more at post-gazette.com ...


TOPICS: Apologetics; Catholic
KEYWORDS: catholic; pittsburgh; vaticancouncilii; wuerl
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Wuerl's letter stressed the importance of lay persons stepping up to take responsible roles in the mission of the church. That is not a compromise, but the vision put forth by Vatican II, Lengwin said.
1 posted on 09/17/2004 8:36:26 PM PDT by Land of the Irish
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To: Land of the Irish

Catholics - Pray for vocations!!!!


2 posted on 09/17/2004 8:37:03 PM PDT by diamond6 (Everyone who is for abortion has already been born. Ronald Reagan)
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To: Akron Al; Alberta's Child; Andrew65; AniGrrl; Antoninus; apologia_pro_vita_sua; attagirl; ...

Ping


3 posted on 09/17/2004 8:38:13 PM PDT by Land of the Irish
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To: Owl_Eagle; brityank; Physicist; WhyisaTexasgirlinPA; GOPJ; abner; baseballmom; Willie Green; Mo1; ..

ping


4 posted on 09/17/2004 8:39:06 PM PDT by Tribune7
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To: Tribune7
Isn't it amazing that the Church can ordain 750 permanent deacons every year (most of them married), and only 400 celibate priests?

There is no shortage of married men willing to serve the Church. There is, however, a shortage of celibate men willing to serve the Church.

What am I missing?

5 posted on 09/17/2004 8:49:00 PM PDT by sinkspur ("I heard that the traditionalists have taken over the FR religion forum"--Cardinal Fanfani)
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To: sinkspur

Huh??? I think you just answered your own question...


6 posted on 09/17/2004 8:54:09 PM PDT by sam_whiskey (Peace through Strength)
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To: sinkspur
There is no shortage of married men willing to serve the Church. There is, however, a shortage of celibate men willing to serve the Church.

What am I missing?

Looking at it from a practical standpoint, I think that there would be many more priests if they were allowed to be married. However, I think those priests would also be very distracted with the duties and responsibilities of parenthood and children. After all if priests were to marry, they obviously wouldn't commit the very grave sin of practicing artificial birth control. Many of these priests would have a wife and a bunch of kids. How could they tend to their families and their parishes at the same time? Could the Church support them financially? We all know Catholics are notoriously cheap.

7 posted on 09/17/2004 9:08:43 PM PDT by Grey Ghost II
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To: Grey Ghost II
How could they tend to their families and their parishes at the same time? Could the Church support them financially? We all know Catholics are notoriously cheap.

Things seem to be working quite well in the parishes (five of them) served by Anglican dispensation priests in our diocese. Catholics have stepped up to support their married pastors.

8 posted on 09/17/2004 9:14:05 PM PDT by sinkspur ("I heard that the traditionalists have taken over the FR religion forum"--Cardinal Fanfani)
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To: sinkspur
Things seem to be working quite well in the parishes (five of them) served by Anglican dispensation priests in our diocese.

Well you really won't know for some time. I often tell people that I won't know whether I was a success as a parent until my children have died and THEY have gone to Heaven.

9 posted on 09/17/2004 9:17:28 PM PDT by Grey Ghost II
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To: Grey Ghost II
Actually, we know now. Bringing married Protestant convert priests into the Catholic priesthood has enriched the Church.

Now, if married Catholics were considered for the priesthood, it would be enriched further.

10 posted on 09/17/2004 9:19:27 PM PDT by sinkspur ("I heard that the traditionalists have taken over the FR religion forum"--Cardinal Fanfani)
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To: sinkspur
What am I missing?

The fact that this is the first time in the history of the Catholic church that it can't get anyone to take vows of celibacy to serve it. Never was a problem in the past.

The precipitous devolution just happens to perfectly coincide with the late 60s, just when Vatican II befell us. Just luck of the draw I guess.

Part of the problem is that heterosexuals don't care to attend seminaries full of leftists who often treat the dorms as a bath house, just to graduate and go to work for an episcopal in the John F. Kerry wing of Catholicism.

11 posted on 09/17/2004 9:23:00 PM PDT by AAABEST (Lord have mercy on us)
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To: sinkspur
Now, if married Catholics were considered for the priesthood, it would be enriched further.

I'm married. Do you believe that the Church would be enriched further if I was a ordained a priest?

12 posted on 09/17/2004 9:28:46 PM PDT by Grey Ghost II
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To: AAABEST
The reasons for the decline in the priesthood are a point for discussion, for another day.

I'm more interested in the solution to a shortage of priests and to the enrichment of the oriesthood.

13 posted on 09/17/2004 9:28:51 PM PDT by sinkspur ("I heard that the traditionalists have taken over the FR religion forum"--Cardinal Fanfani)
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To: Grey Ghost II

Only if you came back to the Catholic Church.


14 posted on 09/17/2004 9:30:35 PM PDT by sinkspur ("I heard that the traditionalists have taken over the FR religion forum"--Cardinal Fanfani)
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To: sinkspur
Not many people respect priests anymore. If priests were stronger and more authoritative than the average wimpy dudes the seminaries are putting out, more people would respect the profession. Seriously, what kind of man wants to sign up for a life time of parish council meetings run by menopausal women and effeminate men who have no power in their day jobs so they exercise it on Wednesday evenings in the local parish pastoral center?

Many priests don't even respect themselves. Many are afraid to tell people what they need to hear. Many are afraid to stand up for the Church and Her teachings. Many have as their main goal, to be popular and well liked. For many, salvation of souls is secondary.

Please note, I said many priests, not all priests. Unlike the ICEL, I can distinguish between many and all.

15 posted on 09/17/2004 9:43:54 PM PDT by Grey Ghost II
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To: Grey Ghost II

Come back to the Church. I can't take you seriously until you do.


16 posted on 09/17/2004 9:49:15 PM PDT by sinkspur ("I heard that the traditionalists have taken over the FR religion forum"--Cardinal Fanfani)
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To: sinkspur
Come back to the Church. I can't take you seriously until you do.

What are you talking about? I go to an FSSP parish. Why am I not in the Church?

17 posted on 09/17/2004 9:52:27 PM PDT by Grey Ghost II
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To: sinkspur
Poverty, chastity and obedience is still thankfully the unwavering postition of our church.

Let's go straight to the source.

Matthew 19 10-12;29
His disciples say unto him: If the case of a man with his wife be so, it is not expedient to marry. Who said to them: All men take not this word, but they to whom it is given. For there are eunuchs, who were born so from their mothers womb: and there are eunuchs, who were made so by men: and there are eunuchs, who have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven. He that can take, let him take it.

And every one that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands for my name’s sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall possess life everlasting.


18 posted on 09/17/2004 9:57:21 PM PDT by AAABEST (Lord have mercy on us)
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To: diamond6
Catholics - Pray for vocations!!!!

Not a chance. I am done with the arrogance of bishops. Perhaps Martin Luther was on to something.

This megalomaniac should have considered the alternative headline:

...the Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh is calling their bishop to prepare for a future with fewer parishioners.

19 posted on 09/17/2004 10:01:03 PM PDT by Publius6961 (I don't do diplomacy either)
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To: Grey Ghost II; sinkspur; Religion Moderator
What are you talking about? I go to an FSSP parish. Why am I not in the Church?

Because he said you are and you're bad.

Despite the admonitions of our RM who is somehow trying to get a handle on this, it has to get personal immediately... if not sooner. Look at his tagline.

I for one am 100% behind our RM on this. I would like to be able to intelligently discuss issues once in a while.

20 posted on 09/17/2004 10:09:05 PM PDT by AAABEST (Lord have mercy on us)
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To: AAABEST
He that can take it, let him take it.

Yes. But Christ never mandated celibacy for his apostles.

Chastity is not celibacy. Even married people are called to chastity.

21 posted on 09/17/2004 10:24:34 PM PDT by sinkspur ("I heard that the traditionalists have taken over the FR religion forum"--Cardinal Fanfani)
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To: sinkspur

"....Bringing married Protestant convert priests into the Catholic priesthood has enriched the Church. "


But what that really means is that married Protestant priests (oxymoron) involved in a Catholic priesthood, makes the Church no longer Catholic, but Protestant.


22 posted on 09/17/2004 10:25:45 PM PDT by MarineMomJ (The truth only hurts when it's true.)
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To: MarineMomJ
No, it doesn't. Converts are Catholic.

Convert priests, ordained to the Catholic priesthood, are Catholic priests.

Is that pretty clear?

23 posted on 09/17/2004 10:27:41 PM PDT by sinkspur ("I heard that the traditionalists have taken over the FR religion forum"--Cardinal Fanfani)
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To: Publius6961

Are you saying you're going to leave the church? Leave the Eucharist? I love this sacrament too much to leave it for the sins of its leaders.

I am speaking only for myself, I would never leave the church, even if most of its hierarichy turned corrupt. God said that he would never leave his church, even if the Gates of Hell came upon it, and if God will always be with His church, I'll never leave.

I'd like to say something else, and I apologize if I sound like I'm lecturing, I don't mean to, I'm just passionate. I believe there is an intense spiritual battle going on, and I mean with angels and devils.

These bishops have big fat bullseyes on their backs. And the rest of us will never know the spiritual warfare they battled or what they went through till probably we're on the other side. Its easy for us to sit back and judge when I know that I will probably never be attacked like that. The devil knows each of us and all of our weaknesses, and boy does he go after them.

Have you ever heard of the battles that Padre Pio or Saint John Vianney went through with these spirits, its frightening.

I want to post something that I sometimes put on threads like this:

"It is said that one day having celebrated the Holy Sacrifice, the aged Pontiff Leo XIII was in conference with the Cardinals. Suddenly he sank to the floor in a deep swoon. Physicians who hastened to his side feared that he had already expired, for they could find no trace of his pulse. However, after a short interval the Holy Father rallied, and opening his eyes exclaimed with great emotion: "Oh what a horrible picture I was permitted to see!" He had been shown in spirit the tremendous activities of the evil spirits and their ravings against the Church. But in the midst of this vision of horror he had also beheld consoling visions of the glorious Archangel Michael, who had appeared and cast Satan and his legions back into the abyss of hell. Soon afterward he composed the well-known prayer.

The Church is going through a terrible tribulation, and we should be praying FOR our bishops and priests.

God bless you Publius6961 and your journey!


24 posted on 09/17/2004 10:32:34 PM PDT by diamond6 (Everyone who is for abortion has already been born. Ronald Reagan)
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To: sinkspur
At least you are trying to stick to ideas, let's make a habit of it. Please.

Christ never mandated celibacy, He just taught us it was prudent and the path our clergy should take, and said so Himself in the Gospels many times.

We as a church correctly defer to Him and His divine wisdom, as opposed to other expedient and worldly best laid plans.

25 posted on 09/17/2004 10:43:34 PM PDT by AAABEST (Lord have mercy on us)
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To: sinkspur
1 Corinthians 7: 32-33 But I would have you to be without solicitude. He that is without a wife is solicitous for the things that belong to the Lord: how he may please God. But he that is with a wife is solicitous for the things of the world: how he may please his wife. And he is divided.

26 posted on 09/17/2004 10:49:33 PM PDT by AAABEST (Lord have mercy on us)
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To: diamond6

Mosot important is to institute 24/7 Adoration at your church. Then there will be plenty of vocations in your area.

It needs to happen and there is statistical proof that dioceses with the most vocations are coming from dioceses with the most 24/7 adoration opportunities.

Pray!


27 posted on 09/17/2004 10:52:10 PM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: Publius6961

**Not a chance.**

I don't understand your unwillingness to pray for vocations. It's the most important thing we can do.


28 posted on 09/17/2004 10:54:07 PM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: sinkspur

You don't say one word about the quality of priests. What you are suggesting is a recipe for more of the problems we've been plagued with the last few years.


29 posted on 09/17/2004 10:56:08 PM PDT by nickcarraway
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To: sinkspur

No, that isn't pretty clear.

Catholic convert priests cannot be married and still be Roman Catholic priests.

Anybody out there able to confirm this for me? I never heard of any dispensations that allow convert priests to be married.

If I am wrong, I graciously stand corrected.


30 posted on 09/17/2004 10:56:22 PM PDT by MarineMomJ (The truth only hurts when it's true.)
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To: MarineMomJ

There are two married priests (maybe more) in the Portland, OR Archdiocese. They were formally Anglican priests who converted to the Catholic faith. Perhaps one was a Lutheran. (It's been three to five years ago that this happened so I'm a little fuzzy on the details here.


31 posted on 09/17/2004 11:03:41 PM PDT by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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To: MarineMomJ

From what I understand, if lets say, an Episcopalian who is married decided to be a catholic priest, the church would let him. If he was unmarried and became a priest, he would not be allowed to marry afterwards.

My very informed dad told me this.


32 posted on 09/17/2004 11:08:53 PM PDT by diamond6 (Everyone who is for abortion has already been born. Ronald Reagan)
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To: Salvation

I believe St. Anthony does. There is always someone there when I go.


33 posted on 09/17/2004 11:12:26 PM PDT by diamond6 (Everyone who is for abortion has already been born. Ronald Reagan)
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To: Land of the Irish

Fewer liberal novus ordo priests won't hurt the Church especially now that all their parishioners are dying off.
Many of the newchurch "priests" today are nothing more than sodomite draft-dodgers, and many of the rest don't believe in the Real Presence. Here's just another example...
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/3653784.stm
"During holy mass we need to drink wine as a symbol of the blood of Christ," one of the priests told the newspaper.


34 posted on 09/18/2004 1:25:57 AM PDT by AskStPhilomena
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To: sinkspur

Could you explain to me, perhaps, what it is that has suddenly caused a shortage in celebate males to the priesthood? It seemed to work quite well for quite a long time. Actually, come to think of it, traditional seminaries are overflowing with celebate male candidates for the priesthood.
So, again, the question must be posed. Why is the novus ordo system lacking what the catholic faith had for nearly 2,000 years: men willing to renounce everything to serve God?
It is well established that it worked prior to the "Great Council" quite well, it is well established that it is working even today in traditional orders. Is there something about the Novus Ordo, or a message the average person in the pew gets from attending the novus ordo, that discourages self-sacrifice for the sake of God?


35 posted on 09/18/2004 1:50:12 AM PDT by Blessed Charlemagne (http://www.angeltowns3.com/members/romanist/index.htm)
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To: Blessed Charlemagne
Even Bishop Chaput, another Bishop in Colorado, Bishop Bruskiewitz (sp?) and one in Northern VA (Richmond?) are overflowing with ordinations. Father Anthony from EWTN's Franciscan Friars of the Eternal Word has lined up something like 13 novices this Fall. At the FSSP, they are turning away vocations and asking that people pay their own way...In the Philippines and Poland there is still stiff competition to become a priest.

It's all about the leftists, their flimsy mainline Protestant Theology that gets passed off as Catholic teaching and (in some cases) outlandish homosexuality that turns off men.

The priestly vocations crisis mirrors the married vocations crisis. People are just not going for it and sticking with it.

Let us not adopt more Protestantism and be led to believe the Church was invented in 1965 as some portray. It is the poison that has sickened us for 40 years. In 2000, you find out what works, we have the tools, we just need to get off our lazy butts and do it.

O Come, Holy Inquisition!

36 posted on 09/18/2004 3:24:22 AM PDT by Pio (There is no Salvation outside the Roman Catholic Church)
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To: diamond6
The Church is going through a terrible tribulation, and we should be praying FOR our bishops and priests.

Thank you diamond6 that is exactly what we need to be doing daily.
37 posted on 09/18/2004 3:54:14 AM PDT by Talking_Mouse (Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just... Thomas Jefferson)
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To: Salvation
It needs to happen and there is statistical proof that dioceses with the most vocations are coming from dioceses with the most 24/7 adoration opportunities.

Can you tell me where I can find these stats? I would love to take them to my parish. We only have Adoration for 3 hours on first Fridays. Currently there is only one place within an hours drive that has 24/7 Adoration.
38 posted on 09/18/2004 4:00:29 AM PDT by Talking_Mouse (Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just... Thomas Jefferson)
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To: sinkspur

"There is no shortage of married men willing to serve the Church. There is, however, a shortage of celibate men willing to serve the Church.

What am I missing?"

The married men who are serving the Church need to get out there and recruit more celibate men to serve the Church.

Being a Deacon, a husband, a father, running a business, trying to put kids through education, and repaying a mortgage, can be a very good witness to single men as to why they shouldn't even think of attempting to combine marriage and priesthood - even if the Church were to allow it!

If one more parishioner writes to the bishop asking him why he can't ordain me as a priest I am going to start coating the hosts with chilli powder!!!


39 posted on 09/18/2004 4:07:23 AM PDT by Tantumergo
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To: nickcarraway
You don't say one word about the quality of priests.

Widening the number of candidates from which to choose by ordaining married men would definitely improve the quality of priests.

40 posted on 09/18/2004 5:30:06 AM PDT by sinkspur ("I heard that the traditionalists have taken over the FR religion forum"--Cardinal Fanfani)
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To: AskStPhilomena; NYer; Salvation
Many of the newchurch "priests" today are nothing more than sodomite draft-dodgers

LOL!! That's a new one!

Are you aware there hasn't been a draft in 30 years?

41 posted on 09/18/2004 5:32:37 AM PDT by sinkspur ("I heard that the traditionalists have taken over the FR religion forum"--Cardinal Fanfani)
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To: sinkspur

"Now, if married Catholics were considered for the priesthood, it would be enriched further"

It would not!!


42 posted on 09/18/2004 5:36:03 AM PDT by Renatus (C)
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To: sinkspur
What am I missing?

And there is no problem accepting married clergy coverts as priests. I have no idea what the thinking is.

43 posted on 09/18/2004 5:43:42 AM PDT by Tribune7
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To: sinkspur

"Are you aware there hasn't been a draft in 30 years?"

And the average priest in Wuerl's diocese has been ordained 31 years. I personally know two priests who enterered the seminary to avoid the draft. One of them is straight. He quit 20 years ago an got married.



44 posted on 09/18/2004 6:28:25 AM PDT by rogator
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To: Tantumergo

"Being a Deacon, a husband, a father, running a business, trying to put kids through education, and repaying a mortgage, can be a very good witness to single men as to why they shouldn't even think of attempting to combine marriage and priesthood - even if the Church were to allow it!"

Couldn't the church avoid the above problems by ordaining older married men whose children are already grown? I would bet that there are deacons who would volunteer.


45 posted on 09/18/2004 6:33:06 AM PDT by rogator
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To: sinkspur

My biggest opposition to married priests (besides the tradition of the discipline), is I fear that they will be unable to totally devote themselves to the Church, and their will be that constant war within themselves between family and the church.


46 posted on 09/18/2004 6:41:44 AM PDT by StAthanasiustheGreat (Vocatus Atque Non Vocatus Deus Aderit)
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To: AskStPhilomena
I agree--fewer Novus Ordo priests is good news. Besides, the Novus Ordo has created the priest shortage--they ultimately want to destroy the priesthood and have undercatechized lay people run an ecumenical church.
47 posted on 09/18/2004 6:45:29 AM PDT by salva veritate (Pray for Priests; pray for Holy Priests; Pray for MANY Holy Priests)
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To: rogator

Most deacons that I know are ultra liberal in their 'catholicism'. They would, as priests, represent one more nail in the coffin for the R.C.C. as we know it. It would soon be followed by priestesses(since women can be deaconesses) and all sorts of other weird innovations. Like the novus ordo 'Sunday missalette'.


48 posted on 09/18/2004 7:44:08 AM PDT by sydney smith
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Comment #49 Removed by Moderator

To: rogator

"Couldn't the church avoid the above problems by ordaining older married men whose children are already grown? I would bet that there are deacons who would volunteer."

IMHO it would not be good for the Church to do this - although I am sure that there are some deacons who would volunteer. However, the vocation to the diaconate is different from the vocation to the priesthood and just because a man is called to the former does not mean he is called to the latter. We currently have 5 celibate men in training for the diaconate at our seminary, and although they have been "strongly encouraged" to consider the priesthood, none of them feel that God is calling them to it.

With the current turmoil in the Church, allowing married men to be ordained priests would cause even more confusion and disenchantment. It would also encourage the heretics who want to "ordain" women to step up their campaign even further.

I think the Vatican was wrong to give the dispensation for married former Protestant ministers to be ordained. It has effectively created a division in the Church with two different classes of men:

a) Lifelong Catholics who are married and not considered suitable priestly material.

b) Former heretics who are married and, for some reason, ARE considered suitable priestly material.

It has made an ass of the Law. The rule of obligatory celibacy should either be upheld completely or abrogated completely.

In reality, there is no shortage of vocations among celibate men - its just that the ones who God is calling don't fit into the NewChurch paradigm. They are generally too "rigid" or "young fogeys" and the current regime wants to keep them out.

I have personally helped two men from one parish enter seminary over the summer, and we got them in because we knew how to get round the system. As long as they endure to the end, they will make good orthodox priests who are open to the Tridentine Mass.

If all of the 14,000 deacons in the U.S. set their minds to doing the same thing, the "vocations shortage" would be sorted out fairly quickly.


50 posted on 09/18/2004 8:00:35 AM PDT by Tantumergo
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