NAIROBI, KENYA (RNS) Schismatic Roman Catholic priests, who left the church to claim their right to marry, are now asking for an “African pope” to lead them.

The priests say they regret their former church is “allergic” to change. They believe priestly celibacy is neither rooted in the teachings of Jesus nor in the work of his apostles, who were married. And they insist celibacy does not work in an African context.

Former Zambian Archbishop Emmanuel Milingo who married a Korean acupuncturist in a 2001 celebration sponsored by the Unification Church and presided by its late founder, the Rev. Sun Myung Moon, serves as “African patriarch” of a number of church groups affiliated with his movement.

Milingo was excommunicated in 2006 for consecrating four married priests as bishops. Later, he founded a group called “Married Priests Now!”

Since then, the number of priests leaving the church to marry and rear children has grown. There are an estimated 300,000 members affiliated with Milingo’s movement across Africa.

The group, loosely known as the “Reformed Catholic Churches,” resembles the Catholic Church in belief and ritual and is led by young clerics, many of whom were educated in Vatican-approved seminaries before leaving to form their own congregations.

Rev. Peter Njogu, a former Roman Catholic priest who is now  the bishop of Restored Universal Apostolic Church (RUAC) contacts a mass in the Church. RNS photo by Fredrick Nzwili

Rev. Peter Njogu, a former Roman Catholic priest who is now the bishop of Restored Universal Apostolic Church (RUAC) contacts a mass in the Church. RNS photo by Fredrick Nzwili


This image is available for Web and print publication. For questions, contact Sally Morrow.

The fledgling group has churches in Kenya, Ghana, Nigeria, Uganda, Zambia, and South Africa, according to Bishop Peter Njogu, a former Catholic priest, now married, and working in Kenya.

“We respect Pope Francis and pray for him, but we are not Roman Catholics,” said Njogu. “We want a leader similar to the pontiff who will understand our situation. That leader has to be an African.”

The Milingo case shocked and embarrassed the Catholic Church when at age 71 he broke his vow and married Maria Sung, a 43-year-old Korean woman.

Following his marriage, Pope John Paul II summoned him to the Vatican, where he promised not to see his wife anymore.

After the separation, his wife, Sung went on a hunger strike in protest. They reunited in 2006.

Milingo’s marriage gave a global dimension to the calls for married priests, and led dozens of clergy to come forward and reveal their secret marriages and families.

Angry at the betrayal, Catholic bishops expelled priests associated with the rebels and strongly warned Catholics against them.

In marrying, the priests believe they are Africanizing Christianity. They are also open to shunned practices such as polygamy and women’s leadership, said Njogu.

“We must realize, for example, the lack of children is the worst evil for man in the African tradition,” said Njogu who teaches comparative theology at Kenya Methodist University.

In 2011, Njogu established the Restored Universal Apostolic Church. The same year he was installed the church’s bishop by Milingo in a ceremony attended by 15 other married priests. Within two years, RUAC had more than 3,000 members in Kenya alone.

Njogu now serves as the chairman of eight rebel Kenyan priests who have been enthroned as bishops of churches they founded after being expelled from the Roman Catholic Church. Their independent churches are affiliated with Milingo and include 80 former Roman Catholic priests and an estimated 30,000 members, some priests said.

“Every Sunday, we see new people coming to our churches,” Njogu said. “They come voluntarily and want to become our members. I think this is the future of Christianity.”

Njogu, like many in the movement, believes celibacy is too onerous a vow.

“The young priests find it very difficult to stay celibate, and many are in favor of marriage,” he said. “When a priest is married, he is able to serve the church better. This also makes their lives easier.”

Bishop Mark Kambalazaza, a former Malawian Roman Catholic priest who formed Charismatic Redeemed Ministries International, said many priests who take the vow of celibacy live with mistresses.

He thinks the Vatican should allow priests to choose whether to remain celibate. He hopes Pope Francis can change the law.

“This is the perspective in the Anglican and the Greek Orthodox churches,” said Kambalazaza, referring to the practice of married priests in those churches. “The church is called to make an analysis on all these issues and decide appropriately, if it is to remain true to its calling.”

In March this year, the Rev. Anthony Musaala, a Ugandan Catholic priest, shocked the church when he wrote a letter published in the Ugandan press saying that many bishops and priests in the country had failed the celibacy test.

Musaala was immediately suspended for urging open and frank dialogue about priests marrying.

“My forecast is that we will have a few more years of Catholic self-deception, perhaps 10, telling ourselves and the world that everything is OK, nothing serious,” he wrote in the letter. “Then the scandals will surface.”

YS/AMB END NZWILI

79 Comments

  1. I will let you in on a big secret. Celibacy by demand has never worked for any group anywhere. First of all, a sexless life is as unnatural as a non-breathing life. We only have to look at the current events of the Catholic clergy to find evidence against required celibacy and required chastity. There is no argument. Demanded celibacy only attracts those with psychological problems who offend innocent people.

    • HappySheep888

      Thats’s not a big secret, it’s a big lie. Many people have lived celibate lives either because of the Church or for other reasons. If we were only animals without any ability to regulate or control physical instincts you might have a point; but, we are also spiritual with the capacity to control our body’s drives. Perhaps you can’t live without sex and you are certainly within your rights to say no one else can but we are within our rights to not believe you.

      • Thank you. Our lord said it as well , “For there are eunuchs, who were born so from their mother’s 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.” To serve God single heartedly is freedom. If African tradition has such an issue with having children, it seems pretty obvious that a priest has many children; his flock in the Church. These schismatics have no self control, and they do not know what selfless love is, or laying down of ones life for ones friend or mortification. They don’t know how to really love.

        • Eunich does not mean celibrate person. It refers to a male who has had his penis and testicles removed (castrated).It was common practice for centuries to use “Castrati” to sing in the Vatican choir for their nice sounding high-pitched voices. The Italian goverment stopped it in 1870.

          • The verse “tanya” quotes is from the Gospel according to St. Matthew, chapter 19, verse 12:

            “For there are eunuchs who were born that way from their mother’s womb; and there are eunuchs who were made eunuchs by men; and there are also eunuchs who made themselves eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. He who is able to accept this, let him accept it.”

            i. the eunuchs “born that way from their mother’s womb” are those persons who suffer with genetic abnormalities of the genitalia: for example, hermaphrodites, the androgynous, gyandromorphs. That is, for whatever reason, have sexual characteristics that are indeterminate, or combine some of male and some of female, et al.

            ii. eunuchs “made so by men” are the instance that you mistakenly confuse as the only one possible. In ancient Greece/Rome/North Africa/Ottoman/Chinese cultures rulers would often engage in polygamy, and/or concubinage (the practice of having many mistresses or harems/wives). The people, generally men, who acted as guards of these harems were called eunuchs and were either homosexuals or were “made” eunuchs by castration.

            iii. eunuchs “who have made themselves eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven” refers to what historically developed within the catholic Church and has traditionally referred to either consecrated religious (monks or nuns) or since the 10th/11th centuries the deacons, priests, bishops (i. e. those in the clerical state of holy orders).

    • AA Cunningham

      “We only have to look at the current events of the Catholic clergy to find evidence against required celibacy and required chastity. There is no argument. Demanded celibacy only attracts those with psychological problems who offend innocent people.”

      An assertion refuted by the epidemic of sexual abuse perpetrated by public education employees, as well as the abuse committed by protestant ministers of every denomination, rabbis, imams, mormon elders, buddhists, etc. none of whom can blame their crimes on the discipline of celibacy. Your argument is specious, at best.

      • Franklin P. Uroda

        Wanting to be married with children AND be a functioning cleric seems to be the root problem. In Roman Catholic Canon Law, priests who want to get married are permitted to do so (the process may take a while) but they may not function as clerics. Another phenomenon, not new, is the schizm of a portion of bishops and clergy of the Roman Catholic Church. The splitting has been going on for hundreds of years.

    • Obviously, you are not very knowledgeable about Jesus Christ.( it appears that you are calling Jesus Christ psychologically disordered) Jesus Chriat is the High Priest and the only High Priest. The priesthood , in the Roman Catholic Church are to be celibate. A very good reason. How can you totally give of yourself over to service God’s children, if you are splitting your Love between God and yourself , if you have a wife and family to support? The priests are to represent Jesus and they are in persona of Jesus Christ. Jesus said, ” be as perfect as your Father is perfect”. Jesus said ,”if you have seen Me you have seen the Father” . Nobody can be perfect if they are so attached to their body pleasures. As the Blessed Mother said at Fatima, to the three children, many Souls fall into Hell everyday.( with Miters hats) The turncoat Judas Milingo should take heed instead of doing his dirty deeds and starting his man made community. He is just like the (9) Nine Lepers that were so ungrateful that they did not Thank God for curing them. Milingo was appointed by Blessed John Paul II as one of the youngest Bishops ,in Africa, and then Milingo double crossed Blessed John Paul II and Jesus Christ, twice and caused public sandal. What a phony and any priest that follows him is also a phony. If you cannot be faithful to your priestly vows, which is a promise to Jesus, that you will feed His sheep and be true to His Church, ‘The One Holy Catholic Apostolic Church. By being unfaithful, you have given yourself over to the power of the dark side and become a minion of the devil.

    • The abuse crisis in the Catholic Church was 95% homosexual in nature. It had nothing to do with celibacy. As you rightly say, they had psychological problems.

      • SO it is OK to “demand” the right to marry in Africa for priests, but at the same time deny that same RIGHT to anyone who is BORN to be gay? Africans are so hypocritical. Just as bad as the Italians. Africans are mad that their “pick” did not make the cut. Celibacy is not possible in Africa. EXACTLY. Many in Africa are sex-oriented and act just like Muslims. They would like to have many wives and also their cake, but their INSECURITY over their own MANHOOD means that they turn around and OPPRESS those who see the world differently because it is who they are. They just don’t like to hear Francis be NICE to gay people. Africans see some people are SUBHUMAN but want no one to see THEM this way.

    • nonsense. This culture is so sex-saturated that people actually believe it is as necessary as the air we breathe? Ridiculous! I would recommend Pope John Paul II’s Theology of the Body for anyone who would like to hear the best explanation for celibacy in the priesthood and also for the proper context of sexuality (which has been completely distorted in our society). John Paul II was hardly one with “psychological problems.” And besides, priests enter the priesthood knowing they are going to serve God and his people in a celibate state. No one forces them to make their vows of chastity. They choose it of their own accord to belong wholly to Christ. No one forces anyone to be Catholic either.

    • It is important to remember a number of related matters that pertain to your misconceptions and caricature:

      i. Celibacy is not “demand”-ed of anyone in the catholic Church. If one believes he is called to religious (consecrated) life or/and holy orders, in the Roman Catholic tradition, he understands that what is integral to that vocation is the tradition (with a lowercase “t”) of celibacy as an aspect of the evangelical counsel of chastity (i. e. the successful integration of the God given gift of one’s sexuality as a gift that one gives back to God, forgoing the physical expression of that sexuality, in order to be completely devoted to a spiritual union with God alone in His Church – devoting one’s self completely to the ministry of the word of God, and the works of God for the benefit of building up the faithful to the full measure of Christ Jesus). Part and parcel of this total commitment is the freeing one’s self up from the demands that are inherent to committing one’s self and providing for one’s spouse and/or children in order to be completely available to the spiritual and social needs of one’s flock. Again, to reiterate and emphasize, this is not “demand”-ed of anyone. No one is holding a gun to anyone’s head and saying, “You must do this.” Aspirants to either the religious life or to holy orders are completely free to live as any other male or female do prior to or in the absence of a discernment to a consecrated or clerical vocation: they may go to college, engage in a career, engage in charitable work, support their parish, get married, have families, raise their families as Christians, put them through college, etc. IF, however, they accurately discern a vocation to the religious or clerical life, then one of those commitments that they are VOLUNTARILY making, is to live a life of chastity as it is appropriate to the single life; namely, celibacy. If, while engaged in the process of said discernment, he or she discovers they are unable to live a life of celibacy, this would be evidence that they have mistakenly and merely subjectively attempted to engage in a vocation to which they are not called. There is NO doctrine or teaching that each and every male or female MUST attempt to become a religious and or a cleric, and therefore MUST engage in a celibate life (“Many are called, but few are chosen.”, cf. I Cor. 7: 32-40; Matt. 19: 10-12,; Luke 18: 22, 29-30; Rev. 14:4).

      ii. “First of all, a sexless life is as unnatural as a non-breathing life.”

      This is so patently evidence of your personal prejudice as to be nonsensical. Presumably you would agree that from the moment that one is born through one’s puberty, it would be considered vilely inappropriate, and predatory to engage with sexual intercourse with innocent children. In other words, we are “sexless” from the moment of our births through puberty, at a minimum. Even into our adolescence, we, as a society, consider it, and appropriately so, vilely inappropriate and predatory to engage in sexual relations with adolescents below a particular age with laws on the books considering it “statutory rape” to engage in sexual intercourse with post-pubescent adolescents under the age of, often, seventeen as they are highly emotional and not, a majority of the time, thinking logically and reasonably, but highly emotionally and that, in most cases, in a volatile manner. Neuroscientists have shown that the human brain is not fully developed until we reach, generally speaking, the age of twenty-five. In addition to underage children and adolescents, another group of persons who, generally speaking, tend to be “sexless” are those post-menopausal women and whatever it is called in men (when their testosterone levels begin to gradually wane when they are no longer capable of fathering much less living long enough to raise and father children) who are in their “silver” or “golden” years whom we call “mature”. The whole point of celibacy is to free men and women up to devote themselves solely to God alone (cf. I Cor 7: 32-35). The passage makes clear that it is not a matter of ecclesiastical restraint – they are free to pursue the calling or not. If they do, the evangelical counsels of poverty, chastity and obedience are their rule of life; if they do not, they are free to marry and raise families.

      iii. “Demanded celibacy only attracts those with psychological problems who offend innocent people.”

      All Catholics and people of good will are ineffably horrified and appalled at the damage done by members of the religious and clerical state who sexually abused innocent children and adolescents. If only a single instance had happened, it would be infinitely disgusting, that so many have happened is tragic beyond comprehension, particularly by those entrusted with sacred ministry. However, having said that, and this is not to either excuse or minimize the tragedy or the issue, of all those in religious and clerical life at the time that these rapes took place, between 2-5% of religious/clergy were involved. Or to put it another way, 95-98% of those in the religious or clerical state did NOT commit unnatural or perverse sexual abuse of children and faithfully lived their vocation to God and to His people. That figure, 2-5%, of sexual predators tracks with the same percentage of public school teachers, police officers, politicians, janitors, university professors, psychologists, plumbers, or whatever other occupation/profession you can name who AREN’T bound by the evangelical counsel of chastity/celibacy in secular life. In other words, those people who are single or married who haven’t voluntarily submitted to the vow of chastity, sexual abuse at the same percentage as those who do voluntarily subscribe to the said vow. Think of this gentleman who was recently discovered to have kidnapped and sexually tortured those women in a room in a house for all those years: priest? no. consecrated religious? no. married? yes. with children? yes. The public school teachers both male and female that have engaged in sexually abusive relationships with minors: priest? no. consecrated religious? no. single? yes. married? yes. with families? yes. Sexual abusers are sexual abusers. It is increasingly becoming known that they are both male and female, both low income and high income, both low social rungs on the ladder and high social rungs on the ladder, both clerical and laity, from all professions, etc. Your comments are evidence more of your ignorance and prejudice than correspondence with the truth or reality.

  2. Celibacy by demand is one thing, but celibacy by choice to follow one’s way into the priesthood is a different thing. The priesthood is not a job that once can qualify for. It’s a calling by God to be the guardian of an entire group or congregation, and a married man has an obligation to his spouse and children that could take him away from the needs of his congregation or parish. Remember, Jesus was celibate, and there are other single adults who are not priests who choose celibacy so as to be free for ministry or available for others. If one would mention sexual abuse as a result of celibacy, that would be an error, as there is sexual abuse by those who are not celibate and has nothing to do with celibacy. If a priest is guilty of sexual abuse to a minor, that person was never meant to be a priest, and it occurs with 1-2% of the clergy, not 20 or 50% as one might think. The same ration happens with teachers, doctors, youth ministers and clergy of other denominations. Look it up! If one cannot be celibate, then one is not called to priesthood, but can work in other areas of ministry. For priests to leave the Church that Jesus has established and then want someone to come in and defend their position is like breaking the law and asking for a judge to back up their reason for breaking the law!

    • George McCartin

      Ted: There is not a scintilla of evidence that Jesus was celibate. On the other hand there is substantial evidence from the New Testament that Peter and other apostles were married. Celibacy should be chosen, not imposed on everyone who has a calling to the priesthood.
      George McCartin
      priest/lawyer

      • Spoken like a true lawyer Theodore (Remember “Alvin, Allllviinnnn….” and the chipmunks….). If one lives a celibate life then there wouldn’t be a “scintilla” of evidence would there, counsellor? Living celibate means THE ABSENCE OF a girlfriend, the absence of a spouse, the absence of children, etc. It is the very absence of evidence that proves the assertion. In consideration of all of the times in the Gospels that it refers to his “mother and brothers” standing outside of a house or a crowd of disciples attempting to get face time with him and the ABSENCE OF the mention of a spouse or children that would/could be called His, it seems the very absence OF that “scintilla” of evidence proves the opposite of what you merely assert it should.

        On the contrary, there is not a SCINTILLA of evidence that Jesus was married. Again, considering the number of times Jesus’s biological/extended family is mentioned, it would stand to reason that IF he had been courting someone, engaged, married, with children particularly in a culture where both the immediate and the extended family were paramount (think the “tribe” of Abraham and the lengths he went to to rescue his nephew lot from slavery, the “twelve tribes” of Israel, the elaborate lists of geneological connection that determined one was either an Aaronic or Levirate priest, etc) the decided absence of a mention of a spouse or children connected in the Gospels is all the more compelling. Furthermore, if your “priest”-hood, is Catholic in nature, you would/should know that celibacy developed as a discipline/lowercase “t” tradition over a millenium (becoming universal circa 10th/11th century). It was/is a most difficult teaching and not until the pool of available disciples of the Way, Christians had developed from around the empire would a suitably large pool of clerical candidates have become available so that a more selective process, such as weeding out those with familial commitments have become possible. You are attempting to prey on the doctrinal/historical ignorance of the populace and merely assert/imply a doctrinal aberration that simply doesn’t exist.

        Yes, St. Peter was married (cf. Matt. 8:14). It is equally true that he paid the ultimate sacrifice for his office as “primus inter pares” among the Twelve and was martyred for the faith – leaving his wife widowed, perhaps children orphans, and his mother without a means of support in her old age. Hence Jesus’s teaching at Matt. 19: 9-12 that it is better that one be totally devoted to God, as He was, than to have a divided heart. Echoed by the way, by St. Paul (cf. I Cor 7 particularly vs. 8, 9; 17, 20; 27-29; 32-35 but the whole chapter should be read to be seen as an inspired commentary on all of the comments Jesus makes in the Gospel regarding, for example, “he who has left mother and father, wife and children for my sake….” etc.

  3. As a Catholic, while I welcome debate about priestly celibacy (which is a tradition, not a doctrine, there are married priests in the RCC, former protestants mostly) I do not think that the sins of schism and heresy are the appropriate response.

    Jesus created His one holy Church under the authority of the See of Peter in Rome. Rome can be slow to change things, and sometimes needs radical prodding. But we don’t need rebel groups, rebel churches, freed up to all sorts of perversion of doctrine, running wild in Africa or anywhere else.

    • AA Cunningham

      ” (which is a tradition, not a doctrine, there are married priests in the RCC, former protestants mostly)”

      Clerical celibacy is a discipline which predates the Apostles. You should have noted that those relatively few married former protestant ministers who have been ordained in the Latin Rite under the Pastoral Provision; for converts from Anglicanism, or with a dispensation from the Holy See; for converts from other denominations, agree, prior to ordination that if their spouse precedes them in death they will then adopt the discipline of celibacy for the remainder of their life.

      You apparently aren’t aware that the 21 Churches in the Eastern Rites ordain, as a norm, married men. All 21 Churches have a shortage of Priests. Marriage isn’t the panacea that many think it would be.

      • AA –

        I didn’t say it was a panacea. Nor did I ignore the fact that Eastern Rites do have married priests, and still have problems.

        I’m actually pro- a celibate priesthood (although I do see some arguments on the other side, just I don’t find them very convincing).

        My comment was about responding to traditions you disagree with schismatically. My view is that if you’re not committed to what the priesthood entails, don’t do it. That’s infinitely better than doing it, regretting it, rebelling against it, and leading whole flocks astray.

        I can’t find any reason you, or the Holy See, would disagree with that!

  4. An excellent article. There should be far more debate about this whole subject.

    I certainly cannot hold to the fact that Christ founded his church under the Seal of Rome. Nor can we say with any certainty that Christ never married. There is much scholarship at the present time which says that Christ did marry.

    Well done – those African priest have great faith and determination. They deserve all the encouragement they can get. It is not the end of this world to be excluded from the Church of Rome.

    • Charles Freeman

      Some of my heroes have been excommunicated. As we learn more about ourselves and our relatives in the animal kingdom, we pull farther away from the RCC. There appear to be quite a number of issues/ forces mitigating towards breaking away segments of the RCC. Would it be fair to conjecture that the Church may well be forced into major doctrinal revisions in the coming years?

    • AA Cunningham

      “Nor can we say with any certainty that Christ never married.There is much scholarship at the present time which says that Christ did marry.”

      Only if one considers the likes of Dan Brown as “scholars”.

    • Spoken like a convinced “protest”…ant / dissident. Catholics don’t claim that Christ founded His Church “under the seal of Rome”, but rather that He founded it on “the rock” upon which I will build My Church” (cf. Matt. 16: 18, 19 with Isaiah 22: 15-25).

      A few inconvenient truths:

      i. In Tanakh (the Jewish Scriptures, what Christians call the OT), there are only one or two instances when God enters into a covenant with a person in a profound way that has implications for everyone who will come after and when He does, He ends up changing that person’s name to reflect this unique and important relationships (think, e. g., Abram–>Abraham, Sarai–>Sarah, Jacob–>Israel). Out of ALL Twelve apostles, who is the ONLY one who God (i. e. Jesus Christ) changes His name…Simon to Kepha (Cephas, cf.

    • accidentally hit the “Post Comment” before I was finished:

      Kepha/Cephas cf. John 1:42. Remember that Jesus is a Hebrew who lives in Galilee near Jerusalem. The ancient Hebrew language is Aramaic. The apostles are unlettered men; the inner core were all fishermen with arms the size of Mike Tyson from hurling in nets filled with fish, and stinking of fish and salt. He did not speak Greek to them (Petros) but Aramaic (Kepha/Cephas).

      In addition, every time all Twelve apostles are mentioned in the NT, Simon Peter/Cephas appears first in the list. Interesting that. His brother Andrew was the first to follow Jesus. You remember the story. Andrew is a disciple of John the Baptist, and John mentions, “There, there He is, the Lamb of God” and Andrew leaves off following John and becomes Jesus’s disciple and runs to his brother Simon and tells him he has found the Messiah. So if the order were chronological Andrew should be first. Or if the lists were compliled to reinforce Jesus’s teaching that no one is to be preferred above any other, then we would expect the lists to be random and egalitarian. But in consideration that ONLY Simon’s name is changed (like the patriarch Abraham, who figured so prominently in the Jewish mind) and that Jesus taught that He who would be great among you must be the servant of all, it stands to reason that Cephas was the “servant of the servants of God”, the new Abraham, the new patriarch, Jesus’s prime minister. Finally, it is so telling that Matt. 16:18 is a near word for word quote from Is. 22:22; and that the context of the trope from Is. 15-25 is the king deposing his “chief steward”, the “master of the palace” and replacing him with a new “chief steward/master of the palace” who the king designates with his authority (the keys of the kingdom/what he binds the king binds, what he looses the king looses) and that as a result of his office, the new chief steward has a distinctive uniform, and is to be considered the “father of the children of Israel”; that is, over the king’s household. The parallels are unmistakeable. St. Peter’s office as “primus inter pares” (i. e. the first among equals) is an office as Christ the King’s prime minister, invested with His authority (the official seal of the See of Peter is the keys of the kingdom), with the power to “bind and loose” (promulgate teaching regarding the faith and morals of the Church) with a distinctive habit (the clerical white) and considered the father over the house of Jerusalem (Jesus is the successor of king David, the eternal King of kings and Lord of lords and the catholic Church is the “new Israel” cf. Gal. 6:16).

  5. When someone becomes a priest they promise obedience and celibacy. Nobody forces anyone to become a priest. Though celibacy is tradition, not doctrine, it is something that is promised upon ordination in vast majority of cases. If a man does not think he can handle celibacy he should pursue an alternate vocation or become a Protestant. It is a myth of the modern age that considers sexual activity to be the most important of rights (without real founding) and that believes celibacy is somehow impossible or causes mental damage. Ridiculous. Celibacy is a sacrifice and is very difficult obviously; do these men really think God will be happy with them splitting the Church because they can’t control their own desires?

    • Charles Freeman

      Probably so. If you believe in a god who created the universe, formed man in his own image, is all-powerful, and is all-knowing and omniscient, why not understand the relations between men and their chosen companions as being derived from god? RCC doctrine has been a perversion from the start.

      • AA Cunningham

        The real perversion is those who fail to comprehend and distort the doctrines and disciplines of the Bride of Christ and who have been rejecting them due to the sin of pride since Pentecost. Todays heretics are no different from the Gnostics, Manicheans, Marcionites, Manicheans, et al, that existed prior to the start of the first modern millennium.

    • Johanna In Exile

      I think this is the most important point. History of celibacy vs. marriage for the priesthood is NOT the issue. The issue is this: These priests made a VOW of poverty, chastity and obedience of their own free will.

      If they want marriage and children, let them be deacons. Or even just respectable pillars of the community. Why they feel the need to become a priest, knowing what the Catholic beliefs are, then become dissidents then become schizmatic it all just comes down to justifying sin.

      In getting married, they have broken two of their own vows. No one MADE me make a vow of marriage to my husband, but in my own free will I married him. I want to keep my vow. I cannot just run around on him and say, “heh, I can’t stay faithful to one man. That isn’t human nature.” That would just be making excuses or attempting to justify my sins against myself, my hubby and my God who loves me.

  6. “You, [Simon-bar-Jonah] are ROCK, and upon this ROCK I found My church; and the gates of hell will not prevail against you. Whatever you bind on earth is bound in heaven, whatever you loose on earth is loosed in heaven.”

    Most of us Christians do not believe Jesus was fooling.

  7. This is a “no win” for our church. I’m sure our pope knows many priests in his home country who are “married.”

    When will reality set in, do you think?

  8. For the information of the ignorant responses above, and for those who pontificate erroneously, on the matter of celibacy: the Roman Catholic Church, Greek Orthodox Church, the Russian Orthodox Church, the many Eastern Rite Churches, the bishops, priests, deacons were married from the beginning of Our Lord Jesus Christ’s ministry until the 9th century and to this present day. Read St. Paul’s letters to learn what the qualifications for bishops and presbyters who were married. Celibacy was not imposed by Jesus Christ Who, speaking to the disciples on marriage and celibacy said that it should be voluntary. Marriage for the clergy was THE Tradition in the Catholic Church, not celibacy, which was imposed after the 9th century. And, please, do NOT use Jesus Christ as an excuse for celibacy! Jesus was God Creator and Father of all creation. If God were to have sexual relations with His Creatures, it would be incest as was the Greek gods of mythology! Know your history and know the Scriptures before commenting on celibacy in the Catholic Church!

    • AA Cunningham

      Facts always get in the way of those who attempt to engage in revisionist history.

      “the bishops, priests, deacons were married from the beginning of Our Lord Jesus Christ’s ministry until the 9th century and to this present day.”

      An assertion refuted by Scripture, which mentions that only one of the Apostles, Peter, was married at one time. I suggest you take a look at Matthew 19:11-12, 27-30 and Luke 18:28-30 for starters.

      “Read St. Paul’s letters to learn what the qualifications for bishops and presbyters who were married.”

      St.. Paul’s instruction to Timothy makes no mention that only married men could be selected. He instructs Timothy on what qualities should be considered if a married man was chosen. Paul himself was a celibate which torpedoes your claim.

      “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. And the unmarried woman and the virgin thinketh on the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit. But she that is married thinketh on the things of the world, how she may please her husband. And this I speak for your profit: not to cast a snare upon you; but for that which is decent, and which may give you power to attend upon the Lord, without impediment.” 1 Corinthians 7:32-35

      “Marriage for the clergy was THE Tradition in the Catholic Church, not celibacy, which was imposed after the 9th century.”

      Interesting that you conveniently choose to ignore Canons XXVII and XXXIII of the Council of Elvira, circa 300 AD. People like you frequently point to the Gregorian reforms in the 11th century as the starting date. Your cabal is all over the map with their “facts”.

      “And, please, do NOT use Jesus Christ as an excuse for celibacy!”

      Ignore the example set by Christ, John the Baptist and the Apostles and while you’re at it forget those 10 Commandments too. Nobody can live up to those standards.

      “Know your history and know the Scriptures before commenting on celibacy in the Catholic Church!”

      You should follow your own advice and you should start by reading “The Apostolic Origins of Priestly Celibacy” by Christian Cochini, SJ. It’s rather dry and there aren’t any pictures so much of it will likely be over your head.

      Thanks for publicly demonstrating your lack of knowledge on the topic.

      • It is quite true that there were married clergy, and in fact there were in fact some married popes as well. Yes, celibacy was considered the better part, of course, but it was not mandated as a requirement for a number of centuries. Presently, within an Eastern Catholic church (one which I go to by the way) which is under the Holy Father in Rome, many of the seminarians in Europe marry prior to becoming priests, and their churches are growing by leaps and bounds over there. If it is okay and fine with the Holy Father and Magisterium of the Church, who are you to say it isn’t. Are you a theologian, and more knowledgeable than them? Please. I have met several seminarians from an Eastern Catholic Church as well as one priest who was married and who in fact is now in Pennsylvania with his wife and children. They are fine, upstanding people, and you would be surprised how humble and kind and truly good they and the seminarians are. They provide a beautiful example of goodness and real faith in Christ and obedience to the Church. So please stop with the nonsense here in this blog. Live our faith with it’s two lungs (East and West), and try anyway to love your neighbor, and be open to the Holy Spirit. Interestingly, our wonderful present Holy Father Francis, when he was living in south American, used to visit and has kept in touch with a couple whose ‘husband’ used to be a Catholic bishop and who left to marry a woman. He died more recently, but our Holy Father Francis has continued to keep in touch with the wife all these years. And….he also used to go to the Eastern Catholic Liturgies very early in the morning before becoming a priest, and also afterwards was responsible for and also said the Liturgies there, so he is extremely knowledge of how the Eastern Churches work. As a little FYI, during the last century into this century, there have been many priest martyrs within the Eastern Catholic Churches for the faith. So my dear folks, like our present Pope Francis of Rome, learn to be more open, sympathetic and compassionate to your own Catholic brethren in Christ. Blessings to all.

      • Mr. AA, there is exhaustive research on the history of celibacy in the Catholic Church in Wikipedia by Jesuit scholars. I suggest you enlighten your ignorance and learn the historical facts before pontificating on the subject.
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clerical_celibacy#First_century

        Here are some quotations of the Scripture and history of celibacy/ marriage of the clergy in the Catholic Church:

        Marriage and Celibacy in the Catholic Church
        From the exhaustice research of
        Clerical celibacy – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

        Celibacy was voluntary, not imposed, in the early apostolic church:
        Mt 19,12 Jesus….”some, because they have renounced marriage for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever can accept this ought to accept it.”

        Some of the apostles were married as St. Peter, Simeon:
        Mk 1, 30 and Lk 4,38 Jesus heals Peter’s mother-in-law of fever

        St. Paul’s letters indicate bishops, presbyters, deacons were married with children:

        I Tm 3,2 “Therefore, a bishop must be irreproachable, married only once…having children..”

        1 Tm 3,4 “Deacons may be married only once….”

        Ti 1, 5-6 “….appoint presbyters in every town on condition that a man be blameless, married only once….with believing children…”

        In the third century, there is simply no clear evidence of a general tradition or practice, much less of an obligation of priestly celibacy-continence before the beginning of the third century. There is no clear evidence that celibacy had apostolic origins. During the first three or four centuries no law was promulgated prohibiting clerical marriage. Celibacy was a matter of choice for bishops, priests and deacons.

        Third century records a number of third century married bishops in good standing and c414, clerical marriage was in vogue. Only after the third century bishops, priests, deacons were not to have intercourse before partaking of the Eucharist.

        St. Hilary of Poitiers 315-68, Doctor of the Church, was a married bishop and had a daughter named Apra.

        Popes of the fourth, fifth, sixth centuries:
        –Father of Pope Damasus I 366-84 was a bishop.
        –Pope Felix III 483-92 whose father was almost certainly a priest, was the great-great grandfather of Pope Gregory I the Great 590-604.
        –Pope Hormisdas 514-23 was the father of Pope Silverius 536-37

        Except for periods before celebrating the Divine Liturgy, conjugal relations, by priests and deacons married before ordination, were allowed. Celibacy and perpetual continence was mandated only for bishops.

        In the tenth century, most priests were married, lived with their wives and raised families and ordination was not an impediment to marriage. Therefore, some priests did marry after ordination and most rural priests were married and many priests and bishops had wives and children.

        It was at the Lateran Council (1123), Canon 3 forbid the clergy to live with women other than family relations. Canon 21 absolutely forbid marriage after ordination.
        A married clergy, not celibate is the TRADITION of the Catholic Church as it is now of the Eastern Rite Church

  9. It will NEVER, EVER bear fruit. You can only rationalize sinful ways, disobedience, disrespect to your God alone but you will never fool the people. There was never FRUIT of the SCHISM that one can see today that stands out since year 1000 and there are not the fruit of the REFORMATION of 500 years that today, one can say, WOW. One cannot divide JESUS or one cannot just say, we will be on our own because we have the best JESUS,……..HE prayed on JOHN 17 and that will be fulfilled in the church HE founded. …….SORRY…………..

    • MGM: Before the 9th to Apostolic times of the Catholic Church, priests could marry but after it was imposed as a condition of ordination. That’s the history, that’s the facts, end of story….if you wanted to be a priest, you had to promise celibacy.

      • PS: I’m not saying or supporting the African clergy schism against celibacy…it is a separation from the Catholic Church…..it is self-excommunication from the true Church of Jesus Christ…..

      • AA Cunningham

        “Before the 9th to Apostolic times of the Catholic Church, priests could marry but after it was imposed as a condition of ordination.”

        Married men could be ordained but were required to adopt the discipline of lex continentiae – total continence. Once ordained a single Priest could not then lawfully marry and remain in the clerical state. Better brush up on your studies and pay close attention to the Canons of the Council of Elvira, circa 300 AD.

        “That’s the history, that’s the facts, end of story….”

        That’s your version of facts and history which don’t bear much resemblance to the truth.

        • Why don’t you quote the whole Scripture?
          Here is what it says in the Catholic Bible:
          1 Timothy 3
          Douay-Rheims 1899 American Edition (DRA)
          3 A faithful saying: if a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work.
          2 It behoveth therefore a bishop to be blameless, the husband of one wife, sober, prudent, of good behaviour, chaste, given to hospitality, a teacher,
          3 Not given to wine, no striker, but modest, not quarrelsome, not covetous, but
          4 One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all chastity.
          5 But if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?

        • Also let’s see what is reported by the New Advent, which is Catholic
          http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/250103.htm

          Chapter 30. The Apostles that were Married.

          1. Clement, indeed, whose words we have just quoted, after the above-mentioned facts gives a statement, on account of those who rejected marriage, of the apostles that had wives. Or will they, says he, reject even the apostles? For Peter and Philip begot children; and Philip also gave his daughters in marriage.

          And since we have mentioned this subject it is not improper to subjoin another account which is given by the same author and which is worth reading. In the seventh book of his Stromata he writes as follows: They say, accordingly, that when the blessed Peter saw his own wife led out to die, he rejoiced because of her summons and her return home, and called to her very encouragingly and comfortingly, addressing her by name, and saying, ‘Remember the Lord.’ Such was the marriage of the blessed, and their perfect disposition toward those dearest to them. This account being in keeping with the subject in hand, I have related here in its proper place.

        • Not true! There was no total/permanent continence. Sexual intercourse was forbidden only before the celebration of the Divine Liturgy…many bishops and priests were married before the 10th century. Have you read my post above? or do want to continue spouting your ignorance on the subject?

  10. CELIBACY as anyone would know it was a DISCIPLINE in the church (please correct me here if its not). CELIBACY was not enforced. One has 10 years to think, re-think if it was their cup of tea and if it is not, get out. No one is holding you in. Now something had happened to you on that discipline (SOMEWHERE, SOMEHOW, YOU HAVE SINNED). What it is is that you are coming out right now and want to convince everybody to storm the church so it will bless you of your SINS. That is not right. ……To readers, please get out your common sense, it works today. Do not just go by the current. THINK what it is doing and where it is leading you.

  11. When you read a negative article about the pope,about the church, use your God given common sense. You do not have to be a theologian, scholar, a genius. Takes no brainier. The holy spirit will truly guide you to the truth. No one else. Think about where the current is leading you right now especially that the world is conflicted, confused and blinded of what is true anymore.

  12. St. Paul spoke about the conflict a married man would face in serving God & his wife/family, he would be divided, because of the time, effort & devotion he would owe to his wife, which would naturally require him to be more involved with the world. Whereas the single man (or woman) can devote himself ( herself) totally to pleasing and serving the Lord. He advised believers to follow his example of celibacy and single life for the Lord, BUT he said not everyone has the same gift, do he recommended each man have a wife and each woman a husband, if they were not called & gifted to follow the Lord in his way. He was making a distinction between a calling to priesthood/religious life and the married vocation. Jesus said, “Some are incapable of sexual relations from birth, some are made that way (eunuchs), and some freely renounce sexual activity for the sake of the Kingdom of God. Let him who has ears to hear it, hear it.” so Jesus by word & example encouraged those who had a calling & gift for it, to practice celibacy for the sake of the Kingdom of God. No one is forced to become a Roman Catholic priest. If they were, they have a legitimate reason to leave & be laicized, just as being forced to marry someone against your will is legitimate grounds for annulment. Otherwise accepting God’s call to be a Roman Catholic priest, has to be from free consent of the will, with all of the responsibilities & privileges, including a full awareness of the requirement for priestly celibacy, with the confidence that God will provide all the graces necessary to be faithful to that commitment, through the Sacraments & prayer and fraternal charity.

  13. AA Cunningham

    “They believe priestly celibacy is neither rooted in the teachings of Jesus nor in the work of his apostles, who were married.”

    They can believe that the moon is made out of cheese if they like and they’d be just as wrong about that.

    The antics of these individuals are reminiscent of those of a paranoid, schizophrenic, anti-Semitic, alcoholic German monk in the 16th century who shared the inability to couldn’t control his libido with these misguided souls. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out, kids.

    • You should follow your own advice and you should start by reading “The Apostolic Origins of Priestly Celibacy” by Christian Cochini, SJ. It’s rather dry and there aren’t any pictures so much of it will likely be over your head.

      Thanks for publicly demonstrating your lack of knowledge on the topic.

      You should not be sarcastic about the lack of knowledge that other people have when you obviously didn’t study this subject very well:

      George T. Dennis SJ of Catholic University of America says: “There is simply no clear evidence of a general tradition or practice, much less of an obligation, of priestly celibacy-continence before the beginning of the fourth century” Peter Fink SJ agrees, saying that underlying premises used in the book, Apostolic Origins of Priestly Celibacy, “would not stand up so comfortably to historical scrutiny”.Dennis says this book provides no evidence that celibacy had apostolic origins.
      Similarly, Philippe Delhaye wrote: “During the first three or four centuries, no law was promulgated prohibiting clerical marriage. Celibacy was a matter of choice for bishops, priests, and deacons. … The apostolic constitutions (c. 400) excommunicated a priest or bishop who left his wife ‘under pretense of piety’ (Sacrorum Conciliorum nova et amplissima collectio 1:51).”

    • Here you go again, being mean, nasty and ignorant. Here’s some other facts that you overlooked:
      Canon 13 of the Quinisext Council (Constantinople, 692) shows that by that time there was a direct contradiction between the ideas of East and West about the legitimacy of conjugal relations on the part of clergy lower than the rank of bishop who had married before being ordained:
      Since we know it to be handed down as a rule of the Roman Church that those who are deemed worthy to be advanced to the diaconate or presbyterate should promise no longer to cohabit with their wives, we, preserving the ancient rule and apostolic perfection and order, will that the lawful marriages of men who are in holy orders be from this time forward firm, by no means dissolving their union with their wives nor depriving them of their mutual intercourse at a convenient time. Wherefore, if anyone shall have been found worthy to be ordained subdeacon, or deacon, or presbyter, he is by no means to be prohibited from admittance to such a rank, even if he shall live with a lawful wife. Nor shall it be demanded of him at the time of his ordination that he promise to abstain from lawful intercourse with his wife: lest we should affect injuriously marriage constituted by God and blessed by his presence

      • Trimelda, Great response to “ignorant”, your posts are excellent! and backed up by notable scholars on the history of marriage and celibacy. There is an exhaustive article on Wikipedia on the subject. Here is a sample of what I obtained from Scripture and Wikipedia. Note the popes who were married and fathered children some of who were Popes!

        Clerical celibacy – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

        Celibacy was voluntary, not imposed, in the early apostolic church:
        Mt 19,12 Jesus….”some, because they have renounced marriage for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever can accept this ought to accept it.”

        Some of the apostles were married as St. Peter, Simeon:
        Mk 1, 30 and Lk 4,38 Jesus heals Peter’s mother-in-law of fever

        St. Paul’s letters indicate bishops, presbyters, deacons were married with children:

        I Tm 3,2 “Therefore, a bishop must be irreproachable, married only once…having children..”

        1 Tm 3,4 “Deacons may be married only once….”

        Ti 1, 5-6 “….appoint presbyters in every town on condition that a man be blameless, married only once….with believing children…”

        In the third century, there is simply no clear evidence of a general tradition or practice, much less of an obligation of priestly celibacy-continence before the beginning of the third century. There is no clear evidence that celibacy had apostolic origins. During the first three or four centuries no law was promulgated prohibiting clerical marriage. Celibacy was a matter of choice for bishops, priests and deacons.

        Third century records a number of third century married bishops in good standing and c414, clerical marriage was in vogue. Only after the third century bishops, priests, deacons were not to have intercourse before partaking of the Eucharist.

        St. Hilary of Poitiers 315-68, Doctor of the Church, was a married bishop and had a daughter named Apra.

        Popes of the fourth, fifth, sixth centuries:
        –Father of Pope Damasus I 366-84 was a bishop.
        –Pope Felix III 483-92 whose father was almost certainly a priest, was the great-great grandfather of Pope Gregory I the Great 590-604.
        –Pope Hormisdas 514-23 was the father of Pope Silverius 536-37

        Except for periods before celebrating the Divine Liturgy, conjugal relations, by priests and deacons married before ordination, were allowed. Celibacy and perpetual continence was mandated only for bishops.

        In the tenth century, most priests were married, lived with their wives and raised families and ordination was not an impediment to marriage. Therefore, some priests did marry after ordination and most rural priests were married and many priests and bishops had wives and children.

        It was at the Lateran Council (1123), Canon 3 forbid the clergy to live with women other than family relations. Canon 21 absolutely forbid marriage after ordination.

      • Johanna In Exile

        Joseph, I noticed earlier when you were giving historical facts you said “TRADITION” but that isn’t exactly right is it? We have some traditions that can change over time – celibacy vs. marriage being something the Catholic Church decided, according to you in 1,000 AD. What is the problem? They felt celibacy was better for their many reasons. We also know that the Catholic Church is unable to change Traditions that Christ instituted (capital T). For instance, the Catholic Church cannot make women priests because she doesn’t have the authority to do so. She does have the authority to ask priests to be celibate, poor, and obedient. The Jesuits added a vow to the Pope, also not necessary but something they decided to do. I just don’t understand what your beef is exactly. You seem to have one, unless I am wrong, you seem very passionate about the history and when. But that isn’t really the point, is it? The point is – these priests made particular vows in front of God and everybody and broke 2 out of 3 vows. If they were Jesuits, then they broke 3 out of 4 vows. Then scandalized the faithful by telling everybody, by their actions by breaking their vows publicly and worse – encouraging others to do so as well.

  14. Priests of the Roman Catholic church have not been required to be celibate throughout history of the church from the time of Jesus, Peter or Paul. The requirement for celibacy was imposed gradually over a great number of centuries by the church and is not a requirement for all priests even now. Before the Roman Catholic church “refined” its’ dogma and became orthodox, there were many other kinds of Christian beliefs and, even, other forms of Catholicism. For example, Irish Catholic priests married for centuries until Roman Catholicism was imposed on Ireland. Eastern and Oriental Catholic churches require bishops to be celibate, but not lesser priests.

    One reason for unmarried priests was not religious, but economic: it was determined by the church that priests’ property should be inherited by the church, not by a priest’s family. Check it out.

    For two different takes on this issue from a Catholic perspective, look up “A Brief History of Celibacy” – FutureChurch (www.futurechurch.org) and “Celibacy and the Priesthood” | Catholic Answers “www.catholic.com”.
    Wikipedia has an interesting article also.

    Google this topic and you’ll find that Catholic priests from Ireland, Austria and other countries in addition to Africa want the celibacy requirement lifted.

  15. I talk from my own experience:
    I find very damaging for women, especially young girls to confess to men-priests, especially the unmarried priests.
    I would challenge men go to “pre-confession”, which is presenting their list of “sins” to a woman, prior to go to confession to a man-priest.
    Then, compare the two experiences.

  16. The comment that Sly posted is totally correct. He quoted Jesus speaking in Scripture saying that some do not marry for the sake of the Kingdom of God. That is what is happening in the Roman Catholic church. A seminarian has many years to make that decision. He can always move on if he has a problem with it. It is a sacrifice that all Roman Catholic choose to accept.Secondly, as someone else said, how can a priest give all to his ministry if he has a wife and family. Many Protestant ministers end up divorcing or have issues with their children as they are growing up. A priest is called “father ” because that is his role as part of his ministry.hundreds of thousands of people of all faiths live celibate lives for different reason, some by choice and others because they are living moral lives and have not married. Don’t bad mouth the Catholic church ,because we are living in an immoral century and people have no control over their hormones.

  17. It is quite true that there were married clergy, and there were in fact some married popes as well. Yes, celibacy was considered the better part, of course, but it was not mandated as a requirement for a number of centuries. Presently, within an Eastern Catholic church (one which I go to by the way) which is under the Holy Father in Rome, many of the seminarians in Europe marry prior to becoming priests, and their churches are growing and flourishing by leaps and bounds over there. If it is okay and fine with the Holy Father and Magisterium of the Church, who is to say it isn’t. We are not theologians, and certainly not more knowledgeable than they are. I have met several seminarians from an Eastern Catholic Church as well as a priest who is married and who is now in PA with his wife and children and is the pastor of a Catholic Church. They are fine, upstanding people, and you would be surprised how humble and kind and truly good they are as well as the seminarians are. Quite an inspiration actually. They provide a beautiful example of goodness as well as real faith in Christ and full obedience to the Church. So let us live our faith that breathes with it’s two lungs (East and West), and try anyway to love our neighbors, and be open to the Holy Spirit. Interestingly, our wonderful and inspiring present Holy Father Francis, when he was living in South America, used to visit and has kept in touch with a couple where the ‘husband’ had been a Catholic bishop and who left to marry a woman. He died more recently, but our Holy Father Francis has continued to keep in touch with the wife all these years. And he also used to attend the Eastern Catholic Liturgies very early in the morning before becoming a priest, and afterwards was responsible for and also held the Liturgies there, so he is extremely knowledge of how the Eastern Churches work. As a little FYI, during the last century from the 1940′s into this century actually, there have been many priest martyrs including married ones within the Eastern Catholic Churches who died for our Catholic faith and are dying these days as well for the faith in other parts of the world. So my dear folks, like our present Pope Francis of Rome, may we all learn to be more open, sympathetic, and compassionate to our many different types of Catholic brethren in Christ who are numbered within about 21 different Catholic Churches and Rites (not only Roman), yet are under our Holy Pontiff. Blessings to all.

  18. Nobody is telling these people not to marry. If they wish to be priests and dedicate their lives serving others that is fine; if they desire a married life then they should do so and look after wife and children. Of course, they would have to find a job to sustain the family.

  19. Interestingly, priests who are married in Eastern Europe have an average salary of about 60 dollars which is supposed to support their families as well. No money comes from a diocese. And they don’t have other jobs. They often do Liturgies for the dead and that extra money is provided by the people who are quite poor. These married priests make it, through the grace of God. And they have a tremendous trust in Him. Poorness doesn’t stop them from wanting to serve the Lord. In Orthodox churches, the priest and/or their matushka might work outside the home. There too, the parishioners help support them. God bless them all for their ministry to the people.

  20. This article is not surprising when one sees what comes out of the Catholic Church in Africa. A man attending seminary and, later, being ordained to the priesthood, in s geographical area where there is much famine, ensures that man of having food in his belly. Also, seversl years ago it was reported that certain African Catholic priests were demanding reverent mothers to hand over their young nuns for the priests’ sexuality. Sadly, when they became pregnant, those young nuns were dismissed from their convents.

  21. I forgot to mention earlier, that why those African priests who demanded the reverent mothers to hand over their young nuns was because the priests did not want to contract AIDS, so they used the clean young nuns for their sexual purposes.

  22. Eunich does not mean celibrate person. It refers to a male who has had his penis and teticles removed (castrated).

    It was common practice for centuries to use “Castrati” to sing in the Vatican choir for their nice sounding high-pitched voices. The Italian goverment stopped it in 1870.

  23. SO it is OK to “demand” the right to marry in Africa for priests, but at the same time deny that same RIGHT to anyone who is BORN to be gay? Africans are so hypocritical. Just as bad as the Italians. Africans are mad that their “pick” did not make the cut. Celibacy is not possible in Africa. EXACTLY. Many in Africa are sex-oriented and act just like Muslims. They would like to have many wives and also their cake, but their INSECURITY over their own MANHOOD means that they turn around and OPPRESS those who see the world differently because it is who they are. They just don’t like to hear Francis be NICE to gay people. Africans see some people are SUBHUMAN but want no one to see THEM this way.

  24. I don’t see anything wrong with priests bein celibate.Before you can a priest you have many years to spend in the seminary,atleast ten to fifteen years,anybody who didn’t discover himself there,must be a fool.priesthood is not by force,it is a vow which was taken willingly,nobody forces them to become priests,they should stop trying to defend themselves, because this is the worst of irresponsibility and betrayal,do not be suprise that men like them can cheat on their wife.All I know is that Roman Catholic church has to come to stay and nothing shall happen to the true faith.

  25. i am not catholic but i feel that when you vow to be a catholic priest, it like you are entering into a marriage contract with the vows you make…..its only tell death a that you can part with them..therefore,its very important that guidance and preplanning is made before on decided to comic to such vows. i think turning back of some of the priest is as a result of lack of planning and guidance prior to settling for the decision of taking the vows…why would one make a promise they dont intend to keep?….i dont that the societies and cultures that we live in should always dictate how we live our lives….to follow even when it misleads???NOOOO!…… celibacy is possible with 100% discipline. some verse in the Bible even states that you would rather not at all make a vow to God if you know that you will not keep it…..its just my my opinion

  26. Celibacy needs to be optional so that there can be both married and celibate priests. St. Peter was a married priest. Jesus chose married men as his apostles and disciples. Celibacy only reinforces clericalism which separates the priest from his people by placing him on an imaginary higher level. Now celibacy is a job requirement for ordination. Celibacy cannot be mandated or it does not work. Why have 150,000 priests chosen to marry? There is a natural demand and need for intimacy in human life and mandated celibacy runs counter to that demand.

  27. The word pope means “papa,” father. It could be seen as a substitute word for patriarch, an honored father-figure, The Coptic Church also calls its Patriarch by the title of pope. It is the media that is attaching the word Pope of Africa to Archbishop Milingo, not Archbishop Milingo. Archbishop Milingo has retired as the leader of the Married Priests Now! Catholic Prelatures and he has asked me as his appointed successor to make some response to this article. Archbishop Milingo considers himself a Roman Catholic and will remain so all his life. He has no interest in the title of pope. Archbishop Milingo offers mass daily and prays five rosaries, one is for the Holy Father, and he prays the Divine Office every day. He is a man of prayer and meditation. His only request of the Vatican is that the married priesthood be restored to the Latin Church as it was in apostolic times and for the first twelve centuries of the Church. The Orthodox Church is actually more apostolic because it has retained the married priesthood as Jesus willed. Archbishop Milingo does not consider himself to be a schismatic since he remains Catholic in his teaching, preaching and sacraments. I have great admiration for Archbishop Milingo and for his prophetic defense of the married priesthood. He is doing the right thing, the more Christ-like thing in defending the priests right to marry. But he is not available to be the leader of any possible schismatic church. +Peter Paul Brennan, Archbishop, Married Priests Now! Catholic Prelatures.

  28. The concept and ministry of the priesthood needs a renewal of gigantic proportions… so to speak of married priests or women priests is only taking baby steps when monstrous giant steps are needed. There needs to be a total renewal of what the priesthood is and means. But unfortunately, the Vatican is not even taking the baby steps that would lead to further renewal. There is a tremendous priest shortage in many parts of the world but the Vatican (the Curia) has been paralyzed to act. It is administrative malfeasance and absolute negligence on the part of the Curia. They expect the Holy Spirit to miraculously fix the problem as they sit and watch and do nothing. With no priests, there will be no Eucharist, and without the Eucharist there is no church. We are witnessing the demise of the Church due to the incompetence of the Curia.

  29. FRANKLIN RODRIGUEZ

    primeramente dire lo siguiente, pedro el denominado por los catolicos romanos como su primer papa era casado, los demas apostoles eran casados a excepcion de juan el apostol que murio siendo celibe no
    porque cristo se lo impusiera sino por voluntad propia.
    en la iglesia primitiva nunca se impuso el celibato, la mayoria de presbiteros y obispos eran casados, muestra de eso es la carta de pablo a timoteo, donde le plantea cual debe ser la vida de un presbitero y obispo, en dicha carta le plantea que el obispo debe ser hombre de una sola mujer.
    el celibato fue impuesto como disciplina eclesiastica por los catolicos
    en el siglo 12 por dos razones, primero para preservar los bienes de la iglesia y no que se gastara en las familias de los sacerdotes y segundo, esta idea del celibato, no esta basada en un mandato biblico
    sino cimentada en la teoria errada y distorsionada de agustin, que despues de pasarse una vida en la corrupcion de la carne, comenzo a interpretar que el cuerpo es malo y que la mujer es sinonimo de pecado, por tal razon, estas fueron las motivaciones que guiaron al
    papa ciricio, a plantear que lo sexual es malo y que los sacerdotes debian mantenerse lejos de la relacion sexual.
    todas estas argumentaciones llevaron a la iglesia catolica a imponer el celibato obligatorio, aunque en la practica ya desde ese tiempo,
    papa, cardenales, obispos y curas, tenian sus amantes y aunque se
    impuso dicha norma, ellos continuaron teniendo sus amantes o concubinas, para muchos de estos ignorantes que aparecen aqui defendiendo el celibato, le recomiendo leer el libro, los papas y el sexo, otro libro, vida sexual de los sacerdotes, del espanol pepe
    Rodriguez.
    una falacia que argumentan los defensores del celibato es, que asi los curas se pueden dedicar por completo al reino de Dios, eso es falso, cientos de sacerdotes ortodoxos, anglicanos, luteranos y de otras
    denominaciones, se dedican por completo a dios y al mismo tiempo cuidan su familia, ademas, dan un buen testimonio a la comunidad
    y sirven de modelo al mundo.
    si alguien tiene el don de celibato lo apoyo y que se entregue a Dios y al pueblo, pero no me vengan con ese cuento que todo el que ingresa a un seminario tiene vocacion de celibato, en mi pais Republica dominicana, acaban de producirse varios hechos de los llamados celibes, el nuncio apostolico un polaco depravado, abusando
    de menores, otro sacerdote polaco tambien acusado de abuso y en otra localidad llamada constanza, otro llamado celibe se aprovecho
    segun las denuncias de varias mujeres.
    el celibato en termino general lo que ha servido de refugio para
    los flamantes homosexuales y pederastas, con ropaje de ovejas , pero son lobos feroces devoradores de menores.
    de ese tema no permito que ningun catolico sentimentalista y puritano me venga a defender como fariseo el celibato, defienda su iglesia , su fe y defienda a cristo, pero no se convierta en apologeta de la corrupcion hecha realidad, esto no es un mandato divino, es simplemente una disciplina eclesiastica, que si el papa francisco
    amanece un dia con la faja bien puesta, la elimina, el no necesita
    sinodo ni concilio para eliminar esa traba.
    esa norma ha sido la culpable de que miles de buenos seminaristas
    abandonaran los seminarios y que muchos santos sacerdotes, dejaran
    el ministerio sacerdotal, si no existiera esa ley eclesial con conveniencias economicas, las parroquias en europa y otros continentes estuvieran cada una con sacerdotes y los seminarios estuvieran llenos, pero catedrales y parroquias hoy son museos y restaurantes en europa y los seminarios han cerrado hasta nuevo aviso.
    no soy un novato en este tema, fui seminarista y conozco en esencia el tema, por esa razon, sali del seminario, porque soy hombre
    y no un malhechor de estos que ha diario salen en los medios
    porque han violado un inocente aprovechandose de su sotana y su
    prestigio . adelante africano y todo el que sale con la frente en alto
    y no el que se queda dandose de valiente, pero en el fondo es un vividor buscando fortuna, placeres y poderes en este mundo.

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