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I've heard things to this effect other places before, but this is the first time that I've read it anywhere. The only shame is that most Catholics don't realize this trend. The solution is not trying to mold the priesthood in the Catholic Church to make it more popular, but rather to foster a culture of vocations.
1 posted on 01/20/2007 3:43:16 PM PST by GCC Catholic
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To: GCC Catholic

I would think that allowing married men to serve as parish priests (i.e. they cannot rise to the rank of Bishop) would be preferable to the increasing trend of having layity serve at the altar and/or distribute the Eucharist.


2 posted on 01/20/2007 3:50:59 PM PST by FormerLib (Sacrificing our land and our blood cannot buy protection from jihad.-Bishop Artemije of Kosovo)
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To: GCC Catholic; FormerLib
GCC, why do you suppose that the author of this piece feels compelled to go to such lengths in a pathetic attempt to show that the practice of married clergy in the East wasn't what what it demonstrably was? Frankly, it is disingenuous at best to say:

"“In the early Church, the vast majority of the clergy was made up of older men who assumed holy orders, left behind their wives, who gave their consent, and entrusted their families to the community. From that moment they were called to live in perfect continence, no longer living at home but rather in church buildings,""

Yeah, as unordained monastics, GCC, not as priests.

And what does this mean:

"“All of the documents show that for many centuries, the abstinence practiced in the West was discussed in those communities and the exceptions that are cited today are actually based on fraudulent sources.”"

Are we supposed to glean from this that the Eastern practice of married clergy was deficient because we sat around and talked about the Western practice of celibacy in some areas, particularly around Rome?

The final paragraph of the article is such a marvelous example of the Roman mindset which some of us, myself included, keep forgetting in our enthusiasm for ecumenical rapprochement with the Latin Church. I'm glad of the reminder!

Bottom line, your discipline of clerical celibacy is your discipline. It rises or falls on its own merits. Attempts to dismiss it by pointing to the East or bolster it by attacking the East are offensive. One would think that the Vatican would have to good grace to leave us out of its internal squabbles.
4 posted on 01/20/2007 4:12:29 PM PST by Kolokotronis (Christ is Risen, and you, o death, are annihilated!)
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To: GCC Catholic; FormerLib; Lady In Blue; Salvation; narses; SMEDLEYBUTLER; redhead; ...

Nasrallah Peter Cardinal Sfeir
Patriarch of Antioch and all the East

Speaking to the 11th General Synod Fathers, gathered for their eighth meeting - October 2005

Vatican City, Oct. 07, 2005 (CNA) - The Cardinal defended the practice of the celibate priesthood and discussed the beauty of the tradition, calling it the "most precious jewel in the treasury of the Catholic Church."

While pointing out that "the Maronite Church admits married priests" and that "half of our diocesan priests are married", the Cardinal Patriarch said that "it must be recognized that if admitting married men resolves one problem, it creates others just as serious."

"A married priest", he said, "has the duty to look after his wife and family, ensuring his children receive a good education and overseeing their entry into society. ... Another difficulty facing a married priest arises if he does not enjoy a good relationship with his parishioners; his bishop cannot transfer him because of the difficulty of transferring his whole family.

He noted that "married priests have perpetuated the faith among people whose difficult lives they shared, and without them this faith would no longer exist."

"On the other hand," he said, "celibacy is the most precious jewel in the treasury of the Catholic Church,"

Lamenting a culture which is all but outright opposed to purity, the Cardinal asked: "How can [celibacy] be conserved in an atmosphere laden with eroticism? Newspapers, Internet, billboards, shows, everything appears shameless and constantly offends the virtue of chastity."

Suggesting that their are no easy solutions to the problem of priest shortages in the Church--an oft brought up point during the Synod--he noted that, "Of course a priest, once ordained, can no longer get married. Sending priests to countries where they are lacking, taking them from a country that has many, is not the ideal solution if one bears in mind the question of tradition, customs and mentality. The problem remains."

To this I would add that it is the policy of the Patriarch NOT to assign married priests to parishes in the diaspora. To appreciate this decision, you need to understand that the Maronite Catholic Church is now spread to every continent around the world. There are large communities of Maronites in the US, South America, Mexico and Australia. ALL of the priests serving in these parishes have taken vows of celbacy.


5 posted on 01/20/2007 4:20:34 PM PST by NYer (Apart from the cross, there is no other ladder by which we may get to Heaven. St. Rose of Lima)
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To: GCC Catholic; Princip. Conservative; trisham; stfassisi; guppas; goteasier; Cailleach; Nevernow; ...
+

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7 posted on 01/20/2007 6:19:48 PM PST by narses (St Thomas says "lex injusta non obligat.")
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12 posted on 01/20/2007 8:14:02 PM PST by A.A. Cunningham
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To: GCC Catholic
Yes, this is a bit off the topic but it's on purpose. We can talk about what is wrong with the Eastern Church and use it as an example of how the Western church shouldn't be all we would like, but it doesn't matter.

Married priests in my opinion are indeed a remedy for homosexual priest in the West. FAMILY, is the backbone of society and the Church should be encouraging this as it leads by example. Not only that marriage is a sacrament for a reason.

Also, I don't care about what happened centuries ago, I am seeing the world as it is today where homosexuality is far more prevalent and poised to make the church work a little harder in saving souls. So, it seems that most of the assumptions made here are based on the idea that the social climate is the same then and now. The Church must make adjustments that do not favor those who seek to diminish it's purpose.

Look, the fact of the matter is, Christianity is being slowly torn apart by Islamic forces pushing their way West. I can point to many parts of the globe, mainly in the East, where Christian places have become Islamic and all we can talk about is the Western Church vs the Eastern Church. Does it bother the Western Church that thousands of Orthodox churches have been destroyed in the last 10 years? It should!

Additionally, today there is a powerful hedonistic moral relativism sweeping across the globe. It's the worship of self, accomplishments, power, and wealth. This is what has taken the place of spiritual fulfillment, love and Christ. Again, adding to the work that the Church must do.

Marriage is under attack from all sides and I would strongly recommend Christianity to take that into consideration when leading the people to their salvation. A married man is not less pious because he is married. A single priest is no more pious because he is single. Both are however equal in their chances for salvation through Christ. However, the married priest certainly has more experience in raising children and has much more understanding of how to deal with todays challenges in relationship to the teachings of Christ than a single priest.
24 posted on 01/22/2007 6:33:45 AM PST by SQUID
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To: GCC Catholic; 2ndMostConservativeBrdMember; afraidfortherepublic; Alas; al_c; american colleen; ...


25 posted on 01/22/2007 5:07:09 PM PST by Coleus (Roe v. Wade and Endangered Species Act both passed in 1973, Murder Babies/save trees, birds, insects)
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To: GCC Catholic

Bump for later.


26 posted on 01/22/2007 5:23:31 PM PST by Salvation (†With God all things are possible.†)
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