Married Priests in the Catholic Church
245 pages

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These essays offer a historically rigorous dismantling of Western claims about the superiority of celibate priests.

Although celibacy is often seen as a distinctive feature of the Catholic priesthood, both Catholic and Orthodox Churches in fact have rich and diverse traditions of married priests. The essays contained in Married Priests in the Catholic Church offer the most comprehensive treatment of these traditions to date. These essays, written by a wide-ranging group that includes historians, pastors, theologians, canon lawyers, and the wives and children of married Roman Catholic, Eastern Catholic, and Eastern Orthodox priests, offer diverse perspectives from many countries and traditions on the subject, including personal, historical, theological, and canonical accounts. As a collection, these essays push especially against two tendencies in thinking about married priesthood today. Against the idea that a married priesthood would solve every problem in Catholic clerical culture, this collection deromanticizes and demythologizes the notion of married priesthood. At the same time, against distinctively modern theological trends that posit the superiority, apostolicity, and “ontological” necessity of celibate priests, this collection refutes the claim that priestly ordination and celibacy must be so closely linked.

In addressing the topic of married priesthood from both practical and theoretical angles, and by drawing on a variety of perspectives, Married Priests in the Catholic Church will be of interest to a wide audience, including historians, theologians, canon lawyers, and seminary professors and formators, as well as pastors, parish leaders, and laypeople.

Contributors: Adam A. J. DeVille, David G. Hunter, Dellas Oliver Herbel, James S. Dutko, Patrick Viscuso, Alexander M. Laschuk, John Hunwicke, Edwin Barnes, Peter Galadza, David Meinzen, Julian Hayda, Irene Galadza, Nicholas Denysenko, William C. Mills, Andrew Jarmus, Thomas J. Loya, Lawrence Cross, and Basilio Petrà.

For more than fifteen years now, through three papacies, one regularly hears expressed, especially in the popular media, the hope that perhaps this or the next pope will change certain things perceived as unpopular or old-fashioned, most of them having to do with sexual ethics. Invariably in that list is the question of abolishing a celibate priesthood in the Latin Church and replacing it with a married priesthood, a process indolent writers facilely assume will consist of a snap of papal fingers bringing instant change.

One of the several purposes of the present volume is to show that a married presbyterate is a much more complex reality than many assume, and that its renewed advent among Catholics-especially in the Latin Church-will require careful consideration of many things. It is a multifaceted reality with its own history and theology deserving of careful consideration-and not as some kind of "concession" to the "lesser brethren," either. A married priesthood is as fully Catholic, as theologically grounded, and as venerable a tradition as priestly celibacy ever was.

No other book yet published offers so careful an analysis, so detailed a history, and so comprehensive a treatment of married Catholic priests as this one does. It looks at history in the first and second millennium; at theology from the apostles to their papal successors John Paul II and Francis; at canon law ancient and modern; at Ukrainian Catholic, Russian Catholic, and Ruthenian Catholic experiences in Europe, North America, and Australia; at Anglican experiences in the Church of England and now in the Latin Church's ordinariates for Anglicans in England and North America; and at Eastern Orthodox pastoral experience and family life in Canada and the United States. It includes the voices of some wives and children of married clergy (though I sought many more); of historians and scholars; and of priests (both Latin and Byzantine), some of whom are celibate, some widowed, and some who are happily married.

All this is by design to show the global reality of married clergy today and the great diversity in their origins and circumstances.


Introduction—Adam A. J. DeVille

Part I. History Ancient and Modern

1. Was Priestly Celibacy an Apostolic Tradition? The Theological Stakes of a Historical Argument—David G. Hunter

2. From Antioch to America via Smyrna: Rethinking Married Priesthood and Parish Life with Ignatius, Alexis, and Polycarp—D. O. Herbel

3. Mandatory Celibacy among Eastern Catholics: A Church-Dividing Issue—James S. Dutko

Part II. Canon Law East and West

4. Recent Papal Pronouncements on the Admission of Married Eastern Catholic Men to the Priesthood: An Ecumenical Issue—Alexander Laschuk

5. Canonical Reflections on Clergy and Marriage—Patrick Viscuso

Part III. Ecumenical Considerations

6. Official Catholic Pronouncements Regarding Presbyteral Celibacy: Their Fate and the Implications for Catholic-Orthodox Relations—Peter Galadza

7. Married Clergy in The Anglican Tradition—John Hunwicke

8. The Gift to the Church of Married Clergy—Edwin Barnes

Part IV. Pastoral-Familial Life

9. Reflections on Two Vocations in Two Lungs of the One Church—David Meinzen

10. Growing Up in a Rectory: Using Oikonomia to Answer the Tough Questions Posed by the Children of Priestly Families—Julian Hayda

11. The Joys and Crosses of Clerical Families—Nicholas Denysenko

12. Marriage and Ministry: An Eastern Orthodox Perspective—William C. Mills

13. “What Did You Expect?”: A Reflection on Married Clergy and Pastoral Ministry—Andrew Jarmus

14. The Vocation of the Presbytera: Icon of the Theotokos in the Midst of the Ministerial Priesthood—Irene Galadza

Part V. Theology

15. Celibacy and the Married Priesthood: Rediscovering the Spousal Mystery—Thomas J. Loya

16. Married Priesthood: Some Theological “Resonances”—Basilio Petrà

17. Married Priests: At the Heart of Tradition—Lawrence Cross and Basilio Petrà

18. Conclusion: Toward a Theology of Married Priesthood—Adam A. J. DeVille

Appendix 1. The Toronto Tempest—Victor Pospishil

Appendix 2. Recent Views on the Origins of Clerical Celibacy: A Review of the Literature from 1980 to 1991—J. Kevin Coyle

Contributors List




Publié par
Date de parution 01 avril 2021
Nombre de lectures 0
EAN13 9780268200114
Langue English

Informations légales : prix de location à la page 0,175€. Cette information est donnée uniquement à titre indicatif conformément à la législation en vigueur.


Mar r ied Pr ies ts in the Catholic Church
Edited by ADAM A. J . DE V I L L E
University of Notre Dame Press Notre Dame, Indiana
University of Notre Dame Press Notre Dame, Indiana 46556 All Rights Reserved
Copyright © 2021 by the University of Notre Dame
Published in the United States of America
Library of Congress Control Number: 2021931599
ISBN: 978-0-268-20009-1 (Hardback) ISBN: 978-0-268-20010-7 (Paperback) ISBN: 978-0-268-20008-4 (WebPDF) ISBN: 978-0-268-20011-4 (Epub)
This e-Book was converted from the original source file by a third-party vendor. Readers who notice any formatting, textual, or readability issues are encouraged to contact the publisher at
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