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A message from Fr. Joseph Fessio, S.J.
Ignatius Press ^
| Apr.27, 2002
| Fr. Joseph Fessio, S.J.
Posted on 04/28/2002 12:35:48 AM PDT by history_matters
A message from Fr. Joseph Fessio, S.J., Publisher, Ignatius Press.
In the papers, on the talk shows, the mantra is repeated: the cure for the present scandals is a married clergy. Of course, celibacy has nothing to do with these scandals: 1) Look at the Anglican church, which may soon be bankrupt in western Canada because of sex abuse lawsuits. 2) The majority of reported cased are of homosexual relations with young boys, not pedophilia; the perpetrators wouldn't be marrying women even if they had the chance. (And what kind of woman would marry these twisted souls?)
And, of course, all the discredited myths about the discipline of celibacy in the Catholic Church are trotted out.
- Celibacy wasn't imposed in the Church until the 6th (or 9th, or 10th) century.
- The motive for imposing celibacy was to prevent Church property from being inherited by the children of the clergy.
The truth is that the Church's obligation of celibacy goes back to the apostles in an *unbroken* line. And the motivation for celibacy was the closer following of Jesus Christ, who required his apostles to leave wife and family, to become "eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom". But don't take my word for it. Ignatius Press has published a number of books which demolish the myths and provide compelling evidence for this unbroken tradition, the jewel of the Catholic priesthood:
By the way:
- If you want to follow these and other controversies, get the inside information, and the unvarnished truth, you'll want to subscribe to Catholic World Report.
The Gay Priest Problem - Check out this special preview article from our upcoming May issue: Fr. Paul Shaughnessy's hard-hitting article on the Gay Priest Problem. Find out how problems in the Church have led to the current situation--and how we can prevent more abuse from happening.
Books on Celibacy and Related Issues Published by Ignatius Press:
Apostolic Origins of Priestly Celibacy
Christian Cochini, S.J.
This is the definitive scholarly statement on the discipline of priestly celibacy in the Church East and West. What Cochini shows through patristic sources and conciliar documentation is that from the beginning of the Church, although married men could be priests, they were required to vow to celibacy before ordination, meaning they intended to live a life of continence. He provides extensive documentation, a bibliography and an index.
The Case for Clerical Celibacy
Cardinal Alfons Stickler
In order to arrive at a correct understanding of the much discussed topic of clerical celibacy, this book clarifies the pertinent facts and the discipline found within the Church from its beginnings until the present time, and explores the theological reasons for celibacy. Cardinal Stickler begins with a discussion of the relevant sources and current scholarship to support his conclusions.
NEW - Priesthood and Diaconate
Gerhard Ludwig Muller
With the apostolic letter of Pope John Paul II, Ordinatio Sacerdotalis, the Magisterium of the Catholic Church has presented the tradition of conferring Holy Orders on men only as an expression of divine revelation and hence as a doctrine that binds in faith. This makes clear that the Church's practice in this regard cannot be interpreted as a concession to the customs of an age, for instance to a discrimination against women on sociological grounds. The Church's teaching is founded, rather, upon a theology of the sexes, which is based on the relationship of man and woman originating in creation itself. This relationship is sanctified to the utmost in the Sacrament of Matrimony, as the concrete symbol of God's love for mankind.
|Celibacy in the Early Church
Heid presents a penetrating and wide-ranging study of the historical data from the early Church on the topics of celibacy and clerical continence. He gives a brief review of recent literature, and then begins his study with the New Testament and follows it all the way to Justinian and the Council in Trullo in 690 it the East and the fifth century popes in the West. He thoroughly examines the writings of the Bible, the early church councils, saints and theologians like Jerome, Augustine, Clement, Tertullian, John Chrystostom, Cyril and Gregory Nazianzen. He has gathered formidable data with conclusive arguments regarding obligatory continence in the early Church.
Women in the Priesthood?
Dr. Manfred Hauke
This book should become the standard reference in the debate about women's ordination. The author cites copiously from American as well as European sources and presents the feminist position in the words and categories of the leading feminist authors. But, for the first time, the whole question is placed in the comprehensive context of anthropology, biology, psychology, philosophy, and theology. You will find a balanced presentation of the profound consistency of the Catholic Church's teaching and the practice concerning the role of women in the Church and in society. Written in a scholarly, yet very readable manner.
Aime Georges Martimort
Since the 17th century the history of deaconesses in the Church has been the subject of numerous monographs. What is most evident about the history of deaconesses, however, is how complex the whole subject is. In this exhaustive and thoroughly researched work, Martimort presents a very readable analysis that has become the standard study of the role of women deaconesses in the early Church. He presents in as complete and objective fashion as possible the history, who and what these deaconesses were and what their functions were.
Truth About Homosexuality
Fr. John Harvey
This book addresses the complex moral and pastoral questions involved in both homosexual orientation and activity, including an analysis of lifestyles in accord with the Christian Gospel, and those running counter to the Christian perception. Fr. Harvey, a pioneer in the pastoral care of homosexual persons through his organization Courage, gives a comprehensive view of the issues involved in homosexuality.
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With the major assault upon the Roman Catholic Church by AmChurch (and their cohort in the liberal media) on the way getting ready to try to overwhelm the USCCB meeting in Dallas in June -- it is important for faithful Catholics to be informed ... and well-informed.
To: *Catholic_list; ken5050; Slyfox; rose; ClearBlueSky; Aunt Polgara; Codie; ELS; katnip;viadexter...
Freepmail me if you want on or off my ping list. God bless.
To: Diago; patent; Askel5; Dr. Brian Kopp
From the Rev. Paul Shaughnessy's essay linked above:
Use your checkbook as a carrot and stick. Remember that when your pastoral associate flies to Rio during Mardi Gras, you're footing the bill. Don't be silent partners in corruption. When a scandal involving a priest hits the papers, first, cut out the pertinent news article; second, write a check for $100 to the Missionaries of Charity (Mother Teresa's nuns); third, when you receive a request for donations from the outfit in which the scandal occurred, enclose the article in the return envelope along with a photocopy of your check to the MCs and a note to this effect: "My previous contributions were intended for the support of my pastors and the propagation of the faith. From now on you can pay for your own K-Y jelly and your own AZT. I will resume my donations when you have cleaned the stables." They'll get the message. Just as important, when a bishop or religious superior shows some spine by a gutsy dismissal or intervention, send him a note telling him what you think, and include a check as well.
To: Notwithstanding; father_elijah; ELS; Aquinasfan; Lady In Blue
A bump for Father Fessio!
posted on 04/28/2002 1:11:29 AM PDT
All clergy people in every religion are tainted by this. All the files in question need to be turned over to the authorities so that the abusers can be investigated, and the good and decent people vindicated.
To: Catholicguy; rbmillerjr; brat; Robert Drobot; Dumb_Ox
Sunday morning -- p i n g
Important post. Thank you!
My pleasure. God bless!
Well if all clergy married and unmarried in all denominations are beset by this problem it must say something about the emotional /psychological makeup of men who think they have the calling to spread the word or minister to the laity
posted on 04/28/2002 5:43:41 AM PDT
I just heard Cardinal George on MTP. First off he blinks like a liar. How can his words possibly represent the Church?
Anyone watching Fr. Richard McBrien on Meet the Press??
He is listed in "The Homosexual Network" as a supporter of the homosexual movement and ideology.
posted on 04/28/2002 7:31:11 AM PDT
God bless Father Fessio. May he soon be elevated to the rank of Bishop to take over one of the troubled diocese run into the ground by malfeasance. I have a suspicion that a lot of cathedras will be vacant soon...
Thanks for the bump ... I appreciate the information!
posted on 04/28/2002 7:49:07 AM PDT
Don't make too much of body language. You may have forgotten that our president used to come across on TV like this. He was nervous and unsure of his positions sometimes. Look at him now. By contrast, Bill Clinton was always about to look at us straight in the eye and never blink.
posted on 04/28/2002 8:00:03 AM PDT
Did you listen to Father Neuhaus? McBrien actually affirmed what Neuhaus condemned: the right of "gays"--those who makes homosexual lust the very center of their lives-- to enter the priesthood and openly practice what goes directly against Catholic teachings.
posted on 04/28/2002 8:11:34 AM PDT
Mandatory celibacy came into being at the Second Lateran Council in 1139 when Pope Innocent the Second pronounced all clerical marriages invalid and the children of such marriages bastards. Mandatory celibacy was later affirmed by the council of Trent in the 16th century and subsequently by every pope since that time.
The article you referenced is full of errors and lies. The mischaracterization of what Paul wrote being just one. The author obviously knows little of Scripture or history. His failure to mention only one of the following shows that he is agenda driven and a liar:
Clement of Alexandria (~150-220 AD) "Stromata" Book VII, Chapter XI
Canons XXVII and XXXIII of the Council of Elvira 295-302 AD
Council of Nicea 325 AD
Pope Siricius "Dicreta" 385 AD
Pope Siricius "Cum in unum" 386 AD
Synod of Rome 386 AD
Second Council of Carthage 390 AD
Codex canonum Ecclesiae Africanae 419 AD
catechesis of St. Cyril of Jerusalem (313-386 AD)
"Letter to Pammachius" St. Jerome (347-419 AD)
St. Jeromes' polemic with Vigilantius from Gaul 406 AD
"De conjugiis adulterinis" St. Augustine 419 AD
"Breviatio Ferrandi" ~550 AD
Third Council of Toledo 589 AD
councils held under St. Caesarius of Arles sixth century AD
Irish Penitentials sixth century AD
Poenitentiale Vinniani, no. 27, sixth century AD
Council of Metz 888 AD
Council of Mainz 888 AD
Council of Rheims 909 AD
Synod of Rome 1077 AD
First Lateran Council Canons III, XI 1123 AD
Second Lateran Council Canons VI, VII, XI 1139 AD
After having read both of their writings over the last 20 years, I say, so what if he said one thing he agreed with Neuhaus on. You should read the other things McBrien has had to say. He is a disgrace to his collar. He is a supporter of New Ways Ministry and is sourced in their literature affirming their stand on homosexuality. If you noticed at the end of his diatribe on the show he started doing a commercial for priests being able to marry. He has written volumes mocking the Church while maintaining an air of credibility. He's a snake.
posted on 04/28/2002 8:41:16 AM PDT
Oh! Yes! the media is already spouting the agenda for celebicity to end and marriage to begin...but! but! I always assumed that our clergy were untouchable, devoting their lives to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ...When the first apostles were chosen, some were married and forsook all in order to follow Christ and participate in His spreading of the Word. What pray tell do our modern day clergy have in mind.....Exactly, there has been an infiltration of men whose main desire is to destroy the one and only holy Catholic church, no if's and's or but's....To the faithful clergy I say remain steadfast and pray that we may be rid of this abomination...Peace to all.
posted on 04/28/2002 9:09:02 AM PDT
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