UCA News Catholic Dioceses in Asia
UCA News Catholic Dioceses in Asia
UCA News Catholic Dioceses in Asia
UCA News

Venezuela

New Vatican head says priestly celibacy is "open to discussion"

Archbishop Parolin makes surprising statement during interview

Huffington Post

Huffington Post

Updated: September 10, 2013 05:49 PM GMT
Mission in Asia | Make a Contribution
Mission in Asia | Make a Contribution
New Vatican head says priestly celibacy is open to discussion

Picture: Huffington Post/AP

Share this article :
Archbishop Pietro Parolin, the new Secretary of State of the Vatican, made some surprisingly frank remarks about priestly celibacy that may indicate a new openness to "the democratic spirit of the times." Pope Francis' plans to reform the Vatican and "shake up the church" have received a lot of attention, but he has not yet publicly addressed the issue of mandatory celibacy for priests.

Parolin said in an interview with Venezuelan newspaper El Universal that the tradition of priestly celibacy is not dogma, or a law of divine origin, and is therefore open to discussion. He went on to note that while the church is not a democratic institution, it needs to "reflect the democratic spirit of the times and adopt a collegial way of governing."

While previous popes have declared some topics closed off from discussion, Parolin's remarks may be indicative of the possibility of a greater conversation about an ancient Church tradition.

Though it's not clear exactly when celibacy became mandatory for priests, the first written mandate for chastity dates back to 304 C.E., when Canon 33 of the Council of Elvira stated that all "bishops, presbyters, and deacons and all other clerics" should "abstain completely from their wives and not to have children." A definitive ruling was handed down at the Second Lateran Council of 1139, which ruled that priests were forbidden to marry.

Parolin said, "it is possible to discuss and reflect on these topics that are not defined faith, and consider some modifications, but always in the service of unity and according to God’s will.”

Full Story: Archbishop Pietro Parolin: Priest Celibacy Is Open To Discussion

Source: Huffington Post Religion

Support UCA News...

As 2020 unfolds, we are asking readers like you to help us keep Union of Catholic Asian News (UCA News) free so it can be accessed from anywhere in the world at no cost.

That has been our policy for years and was made possible by donations from European Catholic funding agencies. However, like the Church in Europe, these agencies are in decline and the immediate and urgent claims on their funds for humanitarian emergencies in Africa and parts of Asia mean there is much less to distribute than there was even a decade ago.

Forty years ago, when UCA News was founded, Asia was a very different place - many poor and underdeveloped countries with large populations to feed, political instability and economies too often poised on the edge of collapse. Today, Asia is the economic engine room of the world and funding agencies quite rightly look to UCA News to do more to fund itself.

UCA News has a unique product developed from a view of the world and the Church through informed Catholic eyes. Our journalistic standards are as high as any in the quality press; our focus is particularly on a fast-growing part of the world - Asia - where, in some countries the Church is growing faster than pastoral resources can respond to - South Korea, Vietnam and India to name just three.

And UCA News has the advantage of having in its ranks local reporters that cover 22 countries and experienced native English-speaking editors to render stories that are informative, informed and perceptive.

We report from the ground where other news services simply can't or won't go. We report the stories of local people and their experiences in a way that Western news outlets simply don't have the resources to reach. And we report on the emerging life of new Churches in old lands where being a Catholic can at times be very dangerous.

With dwindling support from funding partners in Europe and the USA, we need to call on the support of those who benefit from our work.

Click here to find out the ways you can support UCA News. You can make a difference for as little as US$5...
UCAN Donate
UCA Newsletter
YOUR DAILY
NEWSLETTER
Thank you. You are now signed up to our Daily Full Bulletin newsletter

Also Read

UCA News Podcast
UCAN Ad
 
Mission in Asia | Make a Contribution
Mission in Asia | Make a Contribution
Mission in Asia | Make a Contribution