Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Why priests shouldn't marry

The American Spectator has this article by Jeremy Lott about why priest should not be allowed to marry. It is very insightful.

I grew up Catholic and attended Catholic schools. During high school, I had a great religion teacher that taught us the history of the Catholic church doctrine including the reason why the Catholic church decided to make priests celibate. It is true that early church leaders were able to marry and have families. At that time, it was common practice that the eldest son would "inherit" the father's profession. Being a church leader at that time was a very powerful position in society and it was being passed down from father to son. As you can imagine, there were some very unscrupulous men becoming religious leaders. The Catholic Church realized something had to be done to stop this practice. Thus it became that the church demanded that priests be celibate.

The practice has continued because it has allowed the priest to be "married" to his congregation. He has no other obligations besides the church and parishioners.