Friday, November 3, 2017
I ALWAYS THOUGHT IT WAS UNFAIR THAT FORMER PROTESTANT MARRIED MEN COULD BECOME PRIESTS BUT NOT CRADDLE CATHOLIC MARRIED MEN! WHAT SAYS YOU?
I think I have had the unique privilege of having had as my parochial vicar for 13 years a former Anglican priest, married with several children, who was received into the full communion of the Catholic Church around 1983.
Our diocese as had at least four married priests with children in the last 30 years or so.
Since the Catholic Church sees Anglican Orders as completely null and void, not only did the late Fr. Daniel Munn have to be received into the full communion of the true Church, but he had to be confirmed and then receive the minor orders as well as be ordained a deacon and then a priest for the first time.
His confirmation as an Episcopalian was invalid as were the various orders of the Anglican Communion. He had to be confirmed and ordained as a Catholic.
To me, that is very unfair to cradle Catholic men who are married. Why in the name of God and all that is holy can a married man not in full communion with the true Church be received into the full communion of the Church through Confirmation,First Holy Communion and then on to Holy Orders, but a fully initiated married Catholic man since his confirmation can't be????? IT IS NOT FAIR!
Thus I have no problem with Pope Francis initiating the advent of ordained life-long Catholics who are men and married into a married priesthood. We already have a married clergy in the Latin Rite by way of Episcopalians and Lutherans (Pope Pius XII allowed married Lutheran ministers to become married Catholic priests in the 1950's!)
And of course the Eastern Rite of the Catholic Church has always had married Catholic priests.
I am with Pope Francis on this one and not just for the Amazon but for every diocese in the world.
The only question is how a living wage will be paid for these married priests and their families and what happens to them when they are divorced and remarried. How will bishops accompany their priests in an adulterous second marriage? Will the same criteria of Amoris Laetitia apply to them? And what about us celibate priests who aren't faithful to our vows/promises? Do we get a pass too for pastoral reasons?
What an exciting time for Church historians.