Why can’t a priests wife work and support the family?
“Why cant a priests wife work and support the family?”
In the Orthodox Church here in America, most priests’ wives do indeed work.
Supporting a priest and his family is not such a big deal. The parish simply has to commit to pay a reasonable wage and provide reasonable benefits. The overwhelming majority of Orthodox parishes in the world are staffed by married priests.
One shouldn’t second guess +Sfeir, however. Given the context within which the Maronite Church operates in the West, which is to say, as a comparatively tiny sui juris church along side the truly huge Latin Church with its own practices like celibacy, the politics of the situation militates against the assignment of substantial numbers of married priests to parishes here. Beyond that, as the cardinal points out, married priests bring with them their own set of problems.
Personally, I’ll take a married priest over a celibate (and we’ve had both in our parish) for parish work any day, but that’s as cultural for me as a celibate priest is for my Irish Catholic cousins.