Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Why I'm leary of married Latin rite priests

Because Nick Kristof thinks it's a good idea. That's it.

Childish? Petulant? Silly? Maybe. You be the judge.
Kristof begins his op-ed on the subject: "Here's my prophecy about the next pope: He will allow married men to become priests."

Kristof begins fretting about the lack of clergy. Kristof has never explained why he thinks it's a good idea that the Church grow, so his advice is suspect. At the end, he indicates that his agenda goes further: "Ordaining women would also be an excellent way to provide a new source of clergy. . . One of his successors as pope will surely apply those precepts of equality to the church itself and allow the ordination of women. . . . " He hasn't mentioned openly active homosexual priests, but would that provide a new source of clergy as well? If that step is taken, why not sacramental gay marriage? In principle, priestly celibacy is a matter of Church discipline and obedience, but it's not clear that such discipline is not still needed.

Side note: if Frank Rich is going to cry about his supposed right-wing "culture of death" every time that it becomes news when a woman is starved and dehydrated to death, can we begin referring to two new phenomena: the Catholic "laity surplus," and the mainline Protestant "laity shortage"? This frames the real state of the world: explosive growth in Catholicism and universal diminishing of modernizing Protestant sects.
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