Catholic priests getting married, is it ethical?

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INSTITUTO TECNOLÓGICO Y DE ESTUDIOS SUPERIORES DE MONTERREY

Dora Pereda Mitre 749793
Ética Persona y Sociedad (group 33)
Professor’s name: Laura del Refugio Alanís Ancira
24 November 2009

Final essay criteria
(85 %)
Catholic priests getting married, is it ethical?

Identifier: Priests and marriage, ethics applied?

Introduction (5 pts.)

Almost everyday we hear a story about apriest who got married, one that had children, the rapist, etc. But why is this happening, and how is it affecting our society? In this essay I will cover the two main points of view and then give my own opinion. Firstly the facts, of this happening, then the points of those on favor and the ones against it, and how is it that this affects us in a person/society/ethics level. I believe thatpriests which choose celibacy, do it for a reason and thus should stay like that, because they failing to commit to their promises, shakes the very ground of our moral /ethical perspective. The subtopics this essay approaches are: Specific cases, known. I.e. father Marcial Maciel, Argument of those in favor, Arguments of those against it, how this affects us ethically speaking, what I believe thesolution would be.

Body of the paper
Priests who aren’t following their vows, why? Pros, cons, and examples.

Celibacy is one of the requisites to become a priest and it also requires abstinence that is because church’s teaching believe sexual activity to be only intended for marriage. But celibacy hasn’t always been a requisite of the Catholic Church’s priests. At the beginning of thechurch, being married and having kids was an “expectation”, and this practice continued throughout the first centuries. It was on the first millennium that the church started to regulate priests marriage, mainly because of clerical abuses and corruption. The church also wanted to prevent, that the priest’s children inherited the priest’s properties, which should belong to the church. The Council ofPavia (1018) issued regulations concerning the clergy’s children, declaring them “children” of the church, and banning them of inheriting any property from their fathers. But it was until 1705 that Pope Gregory VII made an official decree banning married priests from ministry, and since then celibacy has been a requirement for all catholic priests. Nowadays celibacy is seen as a reflection of Jesus’life, and how he loved us all as sons, as a gift God gives to his priests, but even like that there have been some exceptions, in the U.S.A about 100 Episcopal and Lutheran married priests, converted to the catholic church, and were allowed to become catholic priests.

Since 1960 more or less ¼ of Roman Catholic priest in America have resigned, mainly motivated because they have a desire tomarry. Making marriage one of the top causes if not the most important, why priests are leaving the Catholic Church. This is because some priest along their lives develops a strong wish to marry, to end their vows of chastity and celibacy. But why can’t a priest be married well this is because the obligations of marriage limit the time a priest can dedicate to it’s church. This is only logical,because as a priest gets married and forms a family of it’s own, he develops a sort of responsibility to his wife and children, he creates obligations for himself towards his family, he has to provide, protect, educate, for them. So if he has to fulfill the role of a parent, it is much harder for him to fully accomplish his tasks as a minister of God. He can’t possibly give his 100% to his priest’sduties, when he has also to give his 100% to his family.

It is well known that one of the most widely known priests of the Catholic Church, Father Marcial Maciel, (the founder of the Legionaries of Christ) fathered a child before dying. The church has acknowledged this action, while pending on acknowledging, some other behavior that Father Marcial Maciel has been charged with. So it is...
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