Write a 2 pages paper on should catholic priests be allowed to marry. Marriage of Catholic Priests Should catholic priests be allowed to marry? Controversy surroundsthis topic of marriage among the Catholic Priests with the Roman Catholic Church still holding its decree that they should not marry to facilitate them to dedicate fully to serving God and the whole Christian community without distractions of familial responsibilities. The church’s doctrine explains that the Catholic priests are married to the church and they are following the footsteps of Jesus Christ who was single and celibate and therefore dedicated his all (body, mind and soul) to serving the church. This paper is going to support their marriage through citation of various reasons.
The vow of celibacy is not as simple as it sounds when the priests are taking it due to the temptations surrounding the world’s lifestyle and considering they are not cloistered religious men but mingle freely and interact with others. An interview of Fr. Sullivan by the New York Times yields that there are a section of Catholic Priests in various parts of the world who are married but still perform the same church duties as the rest of the celibate priests without any hindrance. Their wives assist them perform God’s work not hinder them (Oppenheimer 1).
There has been a recent decrease in the number of ordained Catholic priests as the number of the Christians faithful continues to increase. According to the cbs news (Quijano), this shortage in the catholic priests has even necessitated the Roman Catholic Church to take up what is seemed as “unorthodox methods” of seeking former Anglican priests (who are married and with children and do not subscribe to the Roman Catholic Church doctrines) to fill up the blank positions. Statistics indicate that the number of Catholic priests has reduced from approximately 59,000 in 1975 to around 39,000 as of 2012. This is relation to the increase in number of followers by approximately 17million between 1975 and 2012. These statistics are only for United States of America and not in other countries all over the world. According to critics, this shortage is as a result of the celibacy vow which even though people want to become priests and serve God, the vow restricts them from marrying whereas many of them want to have their own family to continue their family lineage.
Allowing marriage for the celibate priests will prevent and even tone down some of the “ungodly” behavior always being aired in the media including claims of sodomy with young boys, having multiple female sexual partners with some having their babies (which always is done in the dark). This is also advocated for by Paul in 1 Corinthians 7-8 where he insists it is better to marry than burn with passion and end up committing sexual immorality.
These cases presents the priests as being pretentious and unfaithful to the church and even risks most of them being banned from the church. Instead of having these scenarios that end up “abusing” the good work of the church, Cardinal O’Brien of Scotland agrees that the priests that want to marry should be allowed to do so and those that do not should also continue living a celibate life as long they adhere to their vows of celibacy fully (Press Association).
Oppenheimer, Mark. “A Cohort of Married Roman Catholic Priests, and More Are on the Way.” The New York Times, 6th January 2012. Retrieved from: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/07/us/married-roman-catholic-priests-are-testing-a-tradition.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0
Press Association. “Allow Catholic priests to marry, urges Cardinal Keith OBrien.” The Guardian, 22nd February 2013. Retrieved from: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/feb/22/alllow-catholic-priests-marry-cardinal
Quijano, Elaine. “Catholic Church turns to Anglicans to fill U.S. priest shortage.” CBS News 20th March 2013. Retrieved from: http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-18563_162-57575474/catholic-church-turns-to-anglicans-to-fill-u.