Excommunicated archbishop continues bucking Papa Ratzi on marriage for priests
A renegade in Benedict’s flock is not backing down, even after Ratzi called a meeting of his cabinet to take up the matter of lifting the celibacy and marriage ban for priests — and shut the door on both again last week. When the summit was called, the Vatican specifically cited “the situation created by the disobedience of Monsignor Emmanuel Milingo.”
Zambia’s Milingo, who was excommunicated for ordaining four married American men as bishops in defiance of the Vatican, is still stoking the fire with a press release that is surely giving the men in robes agita.
We believe celibacy is a charism for some priests but not for all. The priesthood must be freed from celibacy as an obligation. Celibacy should be viewed as an option rather than the norm, a charism that is freely chosen, and not enforced as a job requirement. To continue to require celibacy as a prerequisite for ordination only exacerbates an already deteriorating and hemorrhaging situation within the Roman priesthood. Not every priest has the particular calling to be celibate and this is the problem.
We do not believe that a meeting of the Cardinals who head the dicasteries was called to simply reaffirm celibacy. The report that was NOT released by the Vatican is the important one. What did the Cardinals actually say about a married priesthood? Is the Vatican in such a state of denial that it cannot see the need for a married priesthood?
What, so far, has celibacy done for the church? On the American scene it has undermined the church by an ever-increasing sexual abuse scandal that has ruined the lives of countless young victims. It has cast a dark shadow of doubt on the holiness of the priesthood. The faithful can no longer trust their priests. The cost of celibacy has driven diocese after diocese into bankruptcy and church properties have been sold to pay off claims of sexual misconduct by priests. Celibacy, because of its loneliness and lack of intimacy has helped turn thousands of priests into alcoholics.
The Vatican’s denial of the problem confirms and encourages our mission to recall married priests to full active ministry within the Roman Catholic Church. The Married Priests Now! Prelature is the only Catholic diocese calling for the ordination of married men and for the return of married priests to full ministry.
And he really sticks it to the Prada Pope by inviting more married men to be ordained at an upcoming conference in New Jersey. Milingo plans to ordain three more married men during the gathering.