Pope Francis open to married men being priests

Kristopher Drake
March 11, 2017

"We need to consider if "viri probati" could be a possibility", the pope said in an interview with German magazine Die Zeitper CNN,.

Despite his remarks on the limited possibility of allowing married men to enter the Church, the Pope ruled out dropping celibacy as a requirement for the priesthood. Image credit: EFE/Giorgio Onorati.

Thus, it comes as a huge surprise that Pope Francis may be open towards ordaining married men as opposed to the traditional way!

The Vatican, however, accepts married priests in certain circumstances, such as those in the Eastern Rite sects of the church, and married members of the Anglican or Episcopal churches who convert to Catholicism.

Another cause of concern are priests leaving their duties to get married.

Pope Francis has stirred Catholics around the world with his relatively open comments on homosexuality, abortions and climate change, but his latest statement hints he may be looking at moving the Church toward loosening one of its most stringent rules.

The Pope continued, according to the Catholic Times, "Then we also have to determine which tasks they could have, for example in far distant parishes..."

He continued: "Voluntary celibacy is often discussed in this context, especially in places where there are shortages of clerics".

The Pope stresses that getting rid of the celibacy rule entirely is not the answer for the priest shortage. In the United States, the celibacy requirement is partly what sets priests apart from clergy in Protestant denominations.

Clerics are obliged to observe ideal and perpetual continence for the sake of the kingdom of heaven and therefore are bound to celibacy which is a special gift of God by which sacred ministers can adhere more easily to Christ with an undivided heart and are able to dedicate themselves more freely to the service of God and humanity. According to the Gospels of Luke and Matthew, the sacrifice of married life is performed for the Kingdom of God, following that Christ was married to the Church as he was profoundly devoted to the institution and to the love of God. "But women can do many other things better than men", he added.

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