Monday, May 11, 2009

The Heretic II

As I write this I shall be watching for a giant hand coming down from the heavens. It will most likely come from Sainted Mother trying to swat her youngest son as he again points out the flaws of the Catholic Church. Mind you, this again has nothing to do with the faith of the Church but the trappings surrounding the institution.

Recently in Spain a priest has borne the brunt of running afoul of the Vatican. He has been seen in the company of a divorced female and has admitted he has feelings for this woman. He would also like to have a family with her. On top of that he would also like to remain a priest. You can almost count bodies falling. The Church will never stand for this.

How far have we come as a faith and people not to realize how decadent the Church was in its past. Popes, Cardinals, Bishops and all down the line have used the power and influence of the Church over the centuries to do as they wished, concubines and all. I'm quite sure most of these practices have been denounced by some tribunal or another by later officials but it still comes down to the same thing. Priests are human and subject to human failings.

The time has long come and gone for the Church to revoke the oath of chastity for a man to enter the priesthood. The population has well exceeded the capacity to produce priests based on the old guidelines. There are numerous men who would gladly take on the challenge of having a family and leading a congregation. I believe in this instance the Protestants have it right. It is flawed to think priests should be unmarried because Christ never married. Christ was the fruit of marriage in the public eye. What is a more sacred institution than marriage? The priesthood and marriage shouldn't be mutually exclusionary. If one does decide to take on this monumental challenge they must understand their family life many times comes second. The spouse would need to know this from the start. It would take a stouthearted woman to submit to this challenge. I can think of no finer example than Rev. Billy Graham and his wife who have been stalwarts of faith and dignity over the years. That is the type of priest I would follow.

Yes there are many who have fallen from grace in the Protestant faiths and become the subject of headlines. These have mostly been obviously transparent 'evangelists' whose primary concerns have been more about raising money for themselves than it has been about religion. There have been many more instances of priests becoming headlines for their seedy behavior.

Perhaps I have not given my parents enough credit. They always taught us to think for ourselves. Maybe that soft-scented breath of wind is her answer in passing.

1 comment:

  1. In Ireland, through the 7th Century A.D. it was very common for the religious to live in a mixed house, i.e. priests and sisters living together and frequently marrying. It was not until the rise of the Roman Rule in that century that this practice became not tolerated, and eventually became proscribed by the Vatican as the Bishop of Rome became the authority on all things religious within the Catholic Church.