Tag Archive: falling in love with a priest

The tricky word – Relationships

If there is a course which needs to be publicised, that of relationships should be a must for all people. We are human beings. We come into contact with other people all the time. We simply know the faces of some people. Others, their names. Some, we know where they live. A few we share some common interests. The preferred ones, are our friends. The best, become best friends.

Every time that we meet a new person, a new relationship is born. The person could be simply on a nodding acquaintance, but the fact that we notice the person or the person notices us, there is a common point which could remain at that level or be developed into something more friendlier.

In a church, relationships happen all the time. We go there frequently. Most probably we meet the same people all over again. In some churches, the congregation is becoming less and less. Consequently we get to know each other more because of the small number.

Now people carry their luggages all the time. Luggages mean all their emotional and intellectual and physical experiences. Some are looking for company, others are looking for attention. The list of colours of human needs is truly infinite. In any case, the people who go to church, like all other people have their own needs. It’s this hidden agenda which may give new life or kill/poison relationships. Unknowingly, people tend to see the outer layer (the body). But beneath that, there is a complex layer of humanity which includes several hidden assets or challenges.

Now coming to our main theme: that of a priest woman relationship, it has all this plus many more. The priest is the one who is supposed to listen. There aren’t many people who tend to listen outside the best friend ring. Consequently, unknowingly, he puts himself in a vulnerable position. In other jobs (in psychology), people are trained to deal with these issues. In most cases the priest has been trained in philosophy and theology, but rarely in emotional development (except the usual keep your distance approach!). He is already in a big disadvantage. In most cases he does not know how to deal with most of the cases he listens to, except for the fact that people bestow on him the power to speak about relationships with no professional training at all!!!

The woman who speaks to him, is seeing just one angle of the priest: obviously the most attractive which is the caring man who listens to her needs and who is no hurry. He might be physically very attractive too, which adds more fire to the burning heart. The more the woman shares about her personal life, the deeper their relationship becomes. Obviously, sharing fuels all great relationships.

Unknowingly, the fact that they speak in a private place adds more intimacy, which makes their relationship one step away from a truly deep one. Now in a professional setting, the professional person, although he/she listens to one’s personal stories, keeps the distance in a healthy way. In the case of the priest, who lacks professional training, and who passes through crisis and has no supporting wife or significant other, becomes more prone to fill up his life with such a relationship. It’s his inner suffering or emptiness which makes him call for help. The woman, in many cases is the only one who knows about his inner turmoil. When the priest, shares his own personal experience, he changes from a counsellor to a client. He needs a counsellor, where the woman, maybe out of pity, fulfils this job.

During such level of intimacy, in most cases, the promise of celibacy has already been broken, with or without sex. The personal attention and the level of sharing implies a very special friendship. Even married people at this point are in a very delicate situation. It’s very easy to slip over and from a deep relationship it turns out to be a romantic one. The fact that social media has brought many lives very near each other could mean that now relationships are put in a new light. People can share and get to know each other without physically meeting at all. Again this influences the woman-priest relationship, when in order to avoid gossip they prefer to meet online. Once there is a deep sharing from both sides, it’s a question of time when kissing, hugging and the rest becomes part of their story. In most cases, both of them feel the lack of important relationships. Hence their relationship is the only one which keeps them going.

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I am Rose. I was reading the Maltese Married Priests website again, and one of the posts- the one on relationships, really helped me. Of course, all these simple logical things, such as communication seem so obvious – I would have seen all these things regarding other peoples relationships. With myself however, I’ve been pretty blind.

A couple of horribly painful events happened a couple months ago between the priest I’ve written to you about and myself. Ever since I’ve been healing – slowly, very slowly, but still feel caught in a cycle of frustration, anger and pain. It gets better, but then worse, and while I know it is necessary to give things time, I don’t want to fall into wasting any more time on grief or baseless hope than has actually been necessary. I usually try to keep everything as “bottom line up front” when I write to you, but unfortunately this time I doubt I’ll be able to with this article.

A couple months ago, I learned that the priest would be moved to a new parish. I expected it, and had been waiting for it with mixed feelings. On the one hand, I felt deep sadness and fear at him leaving – on the other, relief, that my activities at that parish wouldn’t any more chance running into him and I would have some peace at least.  But I won’t lie, the pain was stronger than the peace.  It made me think back to all those most painful times in my life, as all of us have, where I thought, “I don’t know what to do. How do I even ‘be’ in this?” It’s almost like falling between the cracks of existence, frozen. Here I was, almost having become a nun the year before, not having done so because of how my love for this man changed me, and he was about to be ripped out of my life. All the while, we’d said nothing about it to each other.  I could see and feel the intensity of the battle he was in – he would look at me as though I were an angel descending from heaven one minute and there was a lightness and joy about him, and then next he would become harsh and heavy and look at me as though I were a nuisance at best and poisonous snake at worst. I tried my best to be myself, while still concealing my feelings for him. The negative reactions increased, and one mass I attended that he happened to be celebrating, he saw me sneak in late in the back of the church, and his entire posture changed. He went from cool, collected and preachy, to frustrated and angry. During the consecration I could almost feel the heat of it burning my way. He didn’t have to say it or even look my way, I knew it was directed at me.  He was livid at my presence, and the intensity of it actually did frighten me.

At the young adult group I volunteered with – which he had been helping as well, I was scheduled to give a talk with another friend  on what would be his last day there. Other group leaders decided to make the night from being just talks to also a farewell and thank you for the priest. I thought that of all those days they could have scheduled me to speak that summer, I was scheduled as the very last person he would hear give a talk before he left. So strange, creepy almost  – no coincidences, right? Up to the morning before the talk, I literally made myself sick with worry over the whole situation between the two of us – especially the pain and fear of losing his presence in my life. I begged God, all day, for help. To be selfless – to give, even in this void of having nothing to give, and to in my power make the night the most encouraging and loving for him, and also for others who would hear my talk. I was terrified – of losing him, but also of giving a talk in front of  40 or so people. For a naturally shy person like myself, the latter alone is no small feat.

I decided to speak about “Healing our image of God”, prepared most of it that morning, and stopped at a friends request to pick up some snacks for the farewell. I pushed myself, to the deepest part of my core – to give, to remind myself that its times like this where giving really counts. I grabbed snacks I knew the priest in particular liked, and didn’t tell anyone about all the extra time and thought I was putting into making that night as best as I could for everyone.  I’d heard that the priest had wanted a group photo with the group a couple days before (even though they’d previously taken one), and decided immediately that I shouldn’t be in it. I don’t mean that in some kind of dramatized way – but that it left me unsettled – it felt off – like it was some kind of “trophy” to him, and I wanted no part of it. I assumed I’d be able to slip out after the night was done before they’d take the photo, and it would be no big deal.

The night began late – due to the farewell for the priest, and so my friend who was speaking before me started his talk late. As he began speaking, I realized how full the room was – there was at least 50 people. When it came time for me to speak, my friend introduced me with, “and Rose will be speaking on women’s spirituality..” I told him thank you, and then to the group that I would actually be speaking about a necessary base for both men’s and women’s spirituality, just from a woman’s perspective. I could hear the priest stifle a sarcastic laugh in the back of the room to someone, and they chuckled along. He’d kept a wide birth all evening, keeping far from me, and sitting himself as far back from me as he could. The laugh stung – “why would he act that way?” I thought. Was it “from the woman’s perspective?” that annoyed him? Was it issues with women? I was already so nervous speaking in front of the group, that I pushed it down in my mind and began the talk. To give a super short summary – I focused on how men and women must first and foremost have a healthy image of God before everything else, and it was deep. Emotionally, spiritually, it went straight to the core, and I could see the reactions in the group. In the back, the priest looked down most of the time – uncomfortably so. Especially when I said, “Until we make that 18 inch journey from our heads to our hearts, we’ll never be able to evangelize”. Towards the end of the talk, we were already running late, and I resolved to finish up as quickly as possible, so I could leave, and the others could all leave for the picture. Either way, previous talks have gone over by half an hour or more, so I didn’t think there to be a serious rush. I saw the priest sneak up the side of the room, and whisper to a group leader in the front of the room, and go back to his seat in the back. The leader soon afterwards said, “we’re going to have to leave soon, some people have to go and want to be in the picture.” I looked back and saw a couple people who had come together, looking ants. The priest said, “They have to leave soon but they want to be in the picture.”  I responded to the group, “Oh, OK, 60 seconds, I’ll wrap up with the conclusion quickly…” thinking it would be easiest for everyone, as no one would have to come back down to finish the talk up.  Another woman in the front, speaking harshly suddenly said, “Rose we need to go now.” I was surprised at her tone, she’d never spoken to me in that way before. It was actually mean – as another friend observing later told me. I tried to keep light, and responded with, “OK OK, wrapping up, seriously it will be super quick….” Before I could get another word in, the priest, without getting up, sat forward harshly in his chair, threw his arm forward towards the door and demanded, ordered, ” No, we’re going NOW.” I was shocked. It was really really rude.

The whole room was in a stunned kind of silence, and then everyone started getting out of their seats, zombie-like almost, and started walking out the door to the chapel. The same woman ordered me in that same tone, “Rose, come take the picture..” as she walked by and out the door. A good friend of mine, another woman who had been sitting in the front and who I’d confided in about my feelings for the priest, took my hand in hers and we walked out with the group. I almost went with the flow, numbed with pain, I was walking the same direction as everyone else, but split off into the women’s bathroom as we passed it by. I stood in there, and I prayed. I thought about just going up, thinking they’d think I was being difficult over the talk by not being in the photo or something, but I resolved not to, because it would have been from a place of fear. I had peace standing in there praying, so I stayed.

When people came back down, many wanted to hear the end of the talk. The priest hadn’t returned. Before I could get a word in, my other friend, the friend who had given the talk before me, cut across me, and said, “now we’ll have a question and answer session”.  As people asked me questions, and I responded, I could see this same friend looking at me in my peripheral vision, and he was fuming. Towards me. These “friends” all of sudden had this intense anger towards me since I’d begun the talk.  Afterwards, I spoke with others, who informed me that the priest would be celebrating a night mass before leaving in the morning. I decided to go – to not be afraid, even though I was racked with pain. At mass, he was mad. As he had been at the mass before, but now even more so. As he read the gospel, he accusingly spat out, “beware of false prophets, they come to you in sheep’s clothing, but really they are ravenous wolves..” – “my talk?”, I wondered. I almost cringed at his words, he sounded so angry. Then during the homily, he mentioned me by name, “…as Rose said in her talk…” – the whole thing, was just – a mess. “Why are you drawing more attention to me?” I wondered

The next day I spoke with my friend who I’d confided my feelings for the priest in, and she told me when everyone went up for the picture, the priest made an unnecessary point to “apologize for my absence” and hoped I hadn’t been offended by him cutting off the talk. He then proceeded to run out after the picture and write a long post to the group page on Facebook, making a particular note to “thank everyone who gave talks (including Rose tonight….) She told me, “Rose, last night should have told you everything you need to know about him, even if there are feelings there. You don’t need someone like that.” I could see at that point, how selfish he’d been that night, and then he tried to cover it all up, by dragging my name through the mud, publicly, three times.

I apologize….this is already so long, I’ll try to wrap it up here. But you know Rev, what was the worst thing? After the priest had done everything he’d done, others were accusing me of “not keeping time well”, and were angry towards me. My friend I’d confided in told me, “Rose, when you were speaking, it was like you were a pillar of peace, and around you, all these people erupted into a storm. The whole thing was surreal.” And when everything was all said and done, no one did anything to defend me, and many of the people who I’d been friends with before the talk, spoke to me differently afterwards. Cautiously, at a distance almost. My friend is right – it is surreal.

These are my conclusions, when all is said and done, and I wanted to run both them, and this story I’ve just recounted by you, because I don’t want to live in my head or in a fantasy, and waste any of this precious life that God has given me. I would love to hear any wisdom or insight you may have, if you think it sounds like I am in any way out of bounds or imagining things. Here goes:

I was drawn to the goodness in this priest, and especially his deep feelings for me. As time went on, and they grew, on his and then on my part, it was something I’d never imagined possible – euphoric, wonderful, and full of joy. Then, he felt himself “falling too far”, and has been stuffing the feelings down. Denying them. But it came to the point that my mere presence disturbed him, and like that last night after the picture, he literally had to run out. My talk disturbed him, and others, because so many need healing in the area of their images of God, and they reacted in some ways almost violently – if only in words.

This whole thing remains a mess, as I’ve said before, in my mind and heart. You’ve said it before, and the priests actions proved it – that he is immature – and indeed still far from real love. His good name and popularity that night was more important than me. Rev, I’ve been trying so so hard to end the feelings for him. But they persist. I’m not even at the point of hating having feelings for him still, after all he’s done and said. I feel like I should, but I don’t. And I still am reminded of him often in the day, and I hope he’s not unhappy. That he won’t be trapped in this forever. And yes, that small, stubborn part of me still wonders if he’ll wake up one day with new eyes to truly see, and that the strong intuition I had when I first met him will prove its meaning as something meant to happen between us.

Ah, I don’t want to waste time! Please, I don’t know how to navigate this whole thing, and how to let go, as I should. My friend told me, “Rose, he doesn’t deserve to know you loved him!” I read so many stories of train wrecks between women and priests, and how women hold on, despite all logic’s warning. This priest too, is caught up in that world – in this spiritual ego rat race, while “constantly dodging the fear of hell”. As you’ve said about other priests – still far from real love.

What happened to Catholics,  Christians for that matter who actually know Jesus? Where is that loving community? Don’t get me wrong, I know I sound a little gloomy at the moment, but I’m constantly searching for that church of the first Christians who were so on fire with Christ’s love. So many people are. If anyone searching saw how “Catholics” had treated me that night, and they were searching in earnest, they wouldn’t want anything to do with Jesus or His Church. 

I have hope….It just hurts, so much. Everything. And I know my share, is only a tiny fraction of the pain of this giant tumour in the Church.

Thank you, once again, for listening patiently, and for supporting those of us learning to love in some of the most difficult trials.

Our reader wrote about her initial ‘spark’ between herself and her priest. Although it’s a little bit long, we don’t want to delete any of its contents as it is so interesting and mind captivating. Many women out there are passing through the same adventure. It could help others who are aren’t so capable with writing to feel some empathy towards their situation. It could happen to anyone. As in most cases, it’s not because the woman tempts the priest…..

I am Diana, a 28 year old woman, who by all accounts, is very attractive. I know some think beauty is a virtue and a gift, and I suppose in many respects it is. But I have also found that being especially attractive brings with it many responsibilities and burdens. I have encountered all kinds of uncomfortable and often infuriating circumstances on account of my appearance, from married men to model agencies that have reduced me to a beautiful face and a nice body. I have been the “trophy woman” latched on the fat cat millionaire’s arm, the brunette Barbie in her new sports car, frosted with diamonds and designer jewelry, I have been border-line raped, fought over, and strangled by jealous boyfriends. That was a dark past. I have, as such, grown a thick skin and a “stand-offish” demeanor as a means of protection. Let me be clear, I enjoy my solitude.

I have since awoken from that long nightmare and embraced a simple and drama-free life. I am single and like it that way. I have my Master’s and I am accomplished at a relatively young age. I am also a devout Catholic, but since falling in love with a priest some 9 months ago, I have approached the idea of celibacy with a new pair of eyes. My opinion on the matter is becoming clearer and clearer—this is not to conveniently make my own feelings legitimate and condoned (they are legitimate, regardless), but because I do not believe celibacy should be a package deal to a Godly calling to which men genuinely answer. Celibacy has its purposes and can be a powerful force to make a point, and also to help one tune in to his/her spiritual voice over the louder and persistent corporal one. But it should not be forced on anyone–least of all on young men who are experiencing a heightened zeal for their faith and are particularly impressionable. But to my story…before I begin let me make a disclaimer here. My love story with my parish priest is still in its initial stages and has not and may not progress to the stages most others’ have here. A part of me wants it to, but I cannot fight the “what if” voice in my heart—“what if this really will endanger yours and his salvation?”

In late January I was beginning to feel like my life was steady and complete; I had my Master’s in Conflict Resolution, I was commencement speaker for my graduating class, and I was offered a wonderful paid internship in the Holy Land. I had tunnel vision and all my attention was invested on my career. And after two years away from home, old water had passed under the bridge, former drama had dissipated and I was vying for nothing and no one. I felt thankful for having for the first time in a long time, no heart break with which to contend.

My mother and I were driving through my hometown one late afternoon, when we passed by the town’s principal parish. We had driven past this church countless times and I cannot recall having gone there once. I looked at the clock: 4:55 PM.

“Mom, let’s go say a quick prayer here! We never have before.” I cannot explain why, but I felt this tugging coming from the parish. Naturally my mother was all too happy to oblige, embracing her daughter’s new found zeal for her faith.

We sat three pews from the altar and there were only 15 or so parishioners joining us. The church bells rang and my mother realized then that we were about to sit in for mass, unintentionally. She looked at and I shrugged my shoulders as if to say, “Meh! Why not?”

The priest steadily walked up the aisle and approached the altar. He wasn’t very tall—maybe 5’7” with salt and pepper hair and a balding spot on the back of his head. His energy was very cheery and he sported a smile as he reached the altar. When he turned around to face us all, I made note of his patchy white and gray 5 o’clock shadow and glasses. At this time, he was just one more to me than middle-aged parish priest—nothing more and nothing less. That would rapidly change.

His gaze reached our direction and I distinctly remember some 9 months later his reaction after having spotted me. He tilted his head much like would a confused puppy and cracked a smile to himself. The rest of the mass his eyes kept meeting mine. Each time I blinked in innocence trying to appear like one of his regular parishioners. In truth, I didn’t think too much about his persistent gaze; at the risk of sounding terribly arrogant, I was used to this. He was after all a man—priest or no. Moreover, I was a new face. No big deal, right?

During his sermon it was clear he was from Ireland (I should say right off the bat: I am a sucker for Irish and Scottish accents, even though I grew up in Ireland). But what really stood out to me was his out-of-this-world sermon. It is clear that in every sermon “G” gives, he purposefully seeks to inspire us. He certainly has for me. I would later learn that Father G is known for his Irish wit, outrageous sense of humor, and saintly kindness. I would add he has the most beautiful and soften spoken voice I have ever heard from any man, and just thinking of it makes me weak.

On the way home that night my mother and I discussed “G” at length. “He truly enjoys his vocation,” my mother said. “Yes,” I replied. “A modern-day apostle.” I meant it then and I still do now.

Having loved his last sermon, I started going to his parish daily and I can honestly say that any good work I do, I can partially credit G’s sermons. I assumed that after some time, I would blend in with the normal crowd and he would no longer single me out. I was mistaken—sorely mistaken. What is even more alarming, was my body’s reaction every time his eyes met mine. Suddenly my heart was racing, I felt feverish in my face and my knees were shaking. “What the Hell is wrong with you?!?!” a voice screamed in my head, while I kept a very peaceful and reverent demeanor. His gaze become too much for me; I started practicing custody of the eyes and could not look at him. His looks drove me wild. I also noticed that he no longer stepped down from the pulpit when giving his sermon, but remained up there (remember, I sit only three pews for the front). The few times I greeted him at the end of the Eucharist, he went form smiles and laughs with the others, to frozen stone with hardly a smirk when I approached him. “Take care,” he said very quickly, hardly making eye-contact with me or giving me a chance to respond before looking to another person to greet. From then on I began to exit the side doors of the church, upon the conclusion of mass.

My first time in confession at this parish was beyond awkward, to say the least. It was anonymous but yet somehow he seemed to know it was me. He was very curt and said very little. This surprised me; I added in my confession that I wished for the Lord “to forgive all those I have unintentionally inspired to sin, for it was not my intention to provoke such thoughts” He then gave me absolution quickly and shut the door to the screen. The most awkward part of all—he forgot to give me my penance. Mass followed afterwards and I could sense the feeling of embarrassment emanating off of him—he was read in the face, distracted and made a point to not look in my direction the entire mass.

I asked a friend about his behavior with me—another parishioner there. “I don’ think he cares for me very much,” I said. “No,” she said. “It’s quite the contrary. He cares for you very much—maybe even too much.”

G fell down the side parish steps and fractured his foot. He was out indefinitely. It was during this time that I realized to myself the feelings I had developed for him. To not know when he would return, to not be able to give him words of encouragement, or know how he was was torture to me. I and other parishioners gave him “Get Well” cards and care packages; I myself gave him a card and wrote to him words of encouragement. Nothing terribly personal—just “chin up” and “you will conquer this”. I also enclosed a beautiful wooden scapular of Carmel.

Two and a half months went by, and each day therein I woke up and went to bed thinking of him and praying he was safe. When he made his surprise return one Tuesday morning, I fought back the involuntary smile by looking to the ground and talking myself through it.

Our usual eye “tug-of-war” recommenced; as he would sit and listen to the Lectio he would look over to me, then I would look away, then I would like at him and he would look away. One mass it was so strong and border-line ridiculous that we both fought back smiles, and even shared a look of “okay, let’s keep it together!” I remember looking to the left and a lady whom I think was sweet on him gave me a stern look. Apparently his gazes had not gone unnoticed.

That mass I walked up to receive communion when he stopped everyone in line and rummaged through the chalice for one of the broken pieces of the Host he had just blessed. He then made eye contact with me and placed the Host very hard in my hand and if to say something—but what exactly I can only speculate. It’s these little nuances but clear efforts to communicate that move me to seek the thoughts and advice of others. I wanted to replay this moment and many like it over and over in my head, while the logical part of me said, “Don’t over think it.” But after months of such instances, and being very astute to the attraction of men, I know for a fact this isn’t just love-goggles playing tricks on me. Especially when my friend has noticed his way with me, too.

The retired-in-residence Msgr (also from Ireland) and I became thick as thieves, over the months I started attending daily mass. I decided to tell him about this attraction. I said I was attracted to a priest and to my surprise this 82 year old man immediately said, “It’s Father. G isn’t?” and he had a large grin on his face. I was shocked for two reasons—one: How did he know? And two: He is very ridged and old-fashioned and I was not expecting him to smile at this! I also told him I was worried that the attraction would get so intense that he would request a transfer, in which case I would leave so my parish family wouldn’t lose the best priest I have ever had the fortune to come across. Msgr vehemently denied this likelihood. “No! For one thing he is old. For another, I have a lot of money in the kitty here. Even if he wanted a transfer, the bishop would not likely give it to him.” When I asked how old he is, I was floored—fifty-six. Now, Msgr is old and forgets a lot but these details usually don’t miss him. I wouldn’t have put G a day over 45, and even then his personality was like that of a teenager most times. “Don’t worry about it,” Msgr said. “This happens all the time and it will soon pass. Your friend has been trained on how to handle this.” Well low and behold the attraction has only intensified.

One Saturday evening before mass, I was in the vestibule looking at brochures and taking a bulletin with me when Fr. G entered. He stopped in his tracks and I stood still and stoic, but unable to say a word. There was an awkward moment of silence and intense attraction. He had a look of surprise and fright in his eyes but for the sake of breaking the sense of awkwardness and attraction, managed to say, “Hell—hello…” and he quickly waltzed through the doors. All I could do was smile at him in reply. The energy that was bouncing off between him and myself at that moment was so intense that I half-expected sparks to fly…fireworks and bells to ring. Realizing I was holding my breath, I exhaled and put a hand to my forehead. “For Christ’s sake, girl, get a grip!” I told myself aloud and followed through the doors a few moments later.

My friend and I exited the front that mass, and while she shook G’s hand I tried to slip away. Alas, she called my name to come back. She smiled at G and said, “We have to greet our priest, after all!” G and I exchanged looks and he smiled at me warmly and said, “Well that’s okay!” and then he reached out his hand. I took it and gave him a smile and a very soft shake.

A week ago in confession he was much calmer and collected, and we even chatted up and laughed a bit, almost forgetting that I was receiving the Sacrament of Penance. A sensation of joy and peace overcame me, and I wanted so much to stay there with him and keep talking. I loved hearing his soft throaty familiar brogue; I wanted to reciprocate and provide him with the attention he was giving me at that time, even though it was only his job to do so. We both shared in some laughs and when he prepared for mass that evening, he seemed especially chipper and walked back and forth past me a least half a dozen times, trying to catch my gaze. But his behavior is a roller coaster of uncertainly and contradictions.

As is with every morning now, he greets and hugs some of the parishioners before beginning mass—most of whom are elderly or matronly. I often watch with a wee bit of jealousy, wishing I was embracing him, myself. When he reaches my pew he hardly looks at me but says a quick “morning”. I take no offense—on the contrary, I feel special in some sorts. But this game of nuances and “tag you’re it” is leaving me frustrated on all levels–dissatisfied and I wonder if he feels the same.

A part of me thinks I should stop this juvenile behavior between the two of us and elevate this attraction to a spiritual one; we cannot share a physical relationship but we do share a great thing in common and that is our faith. Perhaps we can be friends? But then I think that I am far beyond that naivety, and moreover can’t help but wonder if he would welcome a friendship with a woman to whom he is clearly very attracted. He is also twice my age and there is little chance for a future. I do believe we would be an incredible pair; our personalities click and we share a sense of humor under appreciated by most. We are both book worms, Catholics of action before words, lovers of Christ, practitioners in our faith, and let’s not forget that intense and undeniable attraction! Thoughts of being with him on an intimate level drive me wild. I know he entered the seminary very young, but I wonder if he is a virgin. He has a vibrant and fiery sexual orb around him; the man is very sexual, even if he doesn’t make use of it. He is also just damned sexy—to me, anyway, and I gather other women there may have a wee crush, too.

Aside from the obvious mutual sexual attraction and appreciation of each other’s company, all I have to boast is fantasy and speculation. One half of my heart says to leave it at that and let it go, for the odds and facts are against us both. The other half says I should stop holding back and go get him. Yet I know this will end in catastrophe and terrible heartbreak. And so I want an in-between, where I can share my love with him in a way with which we are both comfortable and happy. But I cannot carry on with how things are much longer. I will go mad—no, not stalker mad—just within my heart and to myself. To start bringing this attraction to a heightened spiritual level, I have begun reading the Lectio on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

I used to tell myself I am not in love but in lust. I now know this is not the case; if suffering in unrequited love for him would keep him happiest, or even leaving the parish so he can carry on without diversion, I would oblige. He need only say so. I just want him to be happy. When he is in pain, I am in pain. When he laughs, I cannot help but join in.

I have read many books and watched clips on the priesthood and celibacy; from “Priests in Love” to “Dilemma” by Fr. Alberto Cutie. I have also researched the introduction of mandatory celibacy in the Church, and I am resolved to believe that while I love my faith, I am very weary and at odds with much of the Vatican. I have always said it is just another political institution wrapped up in a religious camouflage. I now can say the larger part of me believes it.

Who knows what will happen between G and myself. As a professional peacemaker, I maintain that status quo is the most dangerous menace to peace. I have no intention of leaving this at the status quo– that is for certain.

Please we’re waiting for your comments. If you want to make this blog alive, please do write your comments. Not surprisingly, the New York Times has discovered a new niche in writing – priest’s celibacy issue. It’s an invitation to all writers or better to people who have passed a similar experience to put your experience into writing. Our readers want more true and passionate ones!

The adults in faith.

I shall be happy when I’ll grow up; I shall be happy when I’ll get a job; I shall be happy when I’ll have a man/woman……the list goes on and on. It’s the feeling of somebody who is being alienated of today’s joy and challenges by hoping in a better future! He is after the pie in the sky. Is not this the universal feeling in the Catholic Church? Some journalists had commented about the synod (meeting of a selection of Catholic bishops). The synod has come and gone. Now they are saying that the next synod (2015) will bring about the desired results. And then if that synod will not reap the desired results….shall we wait for the following synod 2016? What sort of game are they playing? Are we expected to base our life’s happiness or expectations on what others desire? Do we want to play kids all our life?

The adult is the stage when a person is capable of taking decisions and face the consequences. When will that time come in the Catholic Church? Why are we waiting for somebody to decide about our spiritual lives? Experience tells us that each and every time that we based our decisions on what others expect of us or what might make them happy, sooner or later we’ll regret that decision.

Spirituality is not something which could be passed on. Just ask responsible parents who do all the necessary things to pass on their faith, yet their kids simply don’t want to hear anything which has to do with the Catholic Church. Everyone of us has to walk on his/her own. You can indicate or show the way, yet the person has to walk the way, all alone. That’s why it’s for adults.

Now when it comes to educating people in faith, this has been one of the greatest sins in the Catholic Church especially when it comes to families. People were never taught how to pray on their own, let alone contact God. They had formulas, but never a personal prayer. It was not just about spirituality. The priests pretended to command what goes on between married people especially when it comes to intimate relationships. The biggest fault in the so called natural method was that it was based simply on the body’s temperature. There is no regard for feelings or the stage at which the relationship has developed. We want to say it out loud: it’s not simply of having or not having children, it’s about the couple who have to know where they are and how deep their relationship is, first and foremost. This is for the good of the couple and indirectly for any offspring which might come along the way. Now nobody can give an answer to that except the couple itself.

It’s not simply about body language. This applies to the spirituality in all its aspects. The priests always presented themselves as experts or know-it-all. The people were never educated to find their way in the big spiritual world. They were kept like small, innocent children! Now the signs of the times have indicated that the people of God are adults in faith. Now as adults they are capable of taking decisions and abide by them.

Now are we going to respect them as adults? This should be of utmost importance especially when it comes to discussing families in the Catholic Church. We are not happy of simply accepting gays/lesbians or divorced people. Obviously indirectly there is still the intention that they are great sinners. The Catholic Church should do much more than that. It should respect the spiritual walk of each person. If we try to apply some rules to everybody, that means that we are photocopying people as there won’t be any respect for individuality nor of the unique spiritual journey of each person.

Some people are still of the mentality that the teaching of the church should not change. Well in our seminary days, it was highly emphasized that the Second Vatican Council (meeting for all bishops of the world – 1963-1965), documented that the pastoral work was not simply the applying of some principles to everyday life as some priests still imply today!! But it’s finding God in the daily living, struggles, challenges, sins, injustices, faults etc…..and after making and gaining experience one can formulate the theory. This is one of the biggest truth finding in the last century. It’s not destructing the principles but bringing them to perfection. How can God create humans who might be gays or lesbians and than we say that they are intrinsically bad? Are they not God’s creations?

We just mentioned some issues but actually it applies to all of the teaching of the Catholic church. Married people are still being addressed to instead of being part of the process where they formulate teaching. The change won’t happen unless there is the change in attitude. The change of attitude is speeded up by the adults in faith who boldly show the way forward. They won’t wait for others to understand them, but rather be leaders, and leaders are there to show the way. Consequently we are not waiting for the Pope to announce something new because as married priests we are already leading the way. We don’t try to reach out to families (as the most optimistic faithful expect the synod to do), we have a family ourselves where we can experience God in our everyday lives. At the moment we’re all painting and decorating our house where paint, dust, sheets of plastic etc….is all over our place!!

In Malta we are looking for a new bishop. If you want to have some fun, why not nominate a married catholic priest? Please note that they won’t acknowledge your request. Most probably they would simply put it in the dustbin.

It’s so easy to see yet so difficult to hear about. The church (in this case we refer to the bishops and the Pope), is trying to listen to what families have to say during this synod  (meeting between a selection of Catholic bishops from all over the world). It unknowingly implies that ‘family’ is coming from outer space! What happened that made priests so alienated and far away from the today’s families? Why were some families ‘forced’ to tell the bishops everyday happenings? Is it so difficult to hear the same messages from people in their own diocese? (diocese is the physical area where the bishop is responsible for all Catholics) Or is it Pope Francis who took off the lid from the boiling kettle? In our opinion we are simply amazed why such common stories are making the round of the world as if we have discovered a new planet!

All this could have been avoided, if there was a permanent link between the priests and the family. In this case we make a fresh appeal: Why not introduce married priests in order to have the family an integral part of the church, permanently? There won’t be all this effort to make the family part and parcel of the church! In this case, then we would focus on only one aspect at a time. In fact some bishops are trying to tell journalists that it’s not just about divorce and living with somebody outside the sacrament of matrimony. Obviously all the married people of the world know that marriage is much more than those two issues. It’s the Catholic Church which is simply discriminating against people who are LGBT; divorced and unmarried people. All other people (murderers; bankers; blasphemers; perjurers; corrupters etc…..it’s an endless list) could receive Holy Communion and be seen as part of the community!!! So it’s not the journalists who are focusing into just two issues!!!

Secondly if the people feel that these two issues should come up for discussion……who is going to refuse? Who knows if the voice of the people is being gently touched by the Holy Spirit? We should thank these people, that notwithstanding the harsh treatment from the Catholic Church, they still seek reconciliation and communication with God!! Do we make a difference between a person who does not recognise authority and a person who is seeing the reading on the wall? We feel the need to define the Word of God. We’re afraid that we’re still stuck to the book. We firmly believe that the Bible is the word of God. But we firmly believe too that God is not in a prison (bible). God could use anybody to send us his message..including the common people who although they have not studied theology, yet, like small children, they can listen to the soft murmurings of the Holy Spirit.

In Sundays’ readings during the celebration of the Eucharist, we notice that they rarely mention the married life, a common reality for most of the people in the pews! When will we have a revision about the choice of readings during the Eucharist to reflect the married state of most Catholics?

The church of Jesus was all inclusive. He never put somebody away….He knew beforehand about Judas and his evil intentions yet he didn’t put him away!! So on what grounds do we intend to put people away? And why some and not all sinners?! Who would be in the church if we start to put people away because of their sins? This is the question we humbly ask to people who still insist that divorced people should stay away from the Eucharist (spiritual food).

One of the families simply said: our son asked us to bring over his boyfriend for Christmas. We couldn’t say no because he is our son. Sorry for coming back to the same argument. Married priests live these issues day in day out. Some married priests have gay sons or lesbian daughters. In that case they are not just simply delivering a homily for others but they do live all the excitement and trouble of such a challenge. Married priesthood will ensure that the priest focuses on real issues in time and not wait for a synod to discuss what other people (us included) have been saying for many years!!

We just invite you to visit the links provided as they help you in your spiritual journey. We encourage other readers to send us their love stories with priests in order to make the whole world aware of what really happens when some priests amply prove that celibacy should not be mixed up with priesthood. Let’s make it optional!

This is a true love story between Lana and Carl (priest). We are not judgemental but we are compassionate. We know that a love feeling cannot be remotely switched on and off. We are happy of publishing another true story…when is the Catholic Church going to accept that love stories between priests and significant others take place? Please accept the fact that it’s simply NOT just a few of them! There are so many hidden stories. Half way through the story, I put forward some questions.

Readers it’s up to you to comment and make this blog truly interactive by commenting or asking questions.

We met in 2012 through a social medium. We exchanged messages but never met online at the same time. It went on for about a month, we were leaving messages for one another. Until finally, we decided to see each other. During our chats, he told me that he’s into family business. He must have felt guilty, so before we even met, he told me what he was. I was shocked and was so angry. I felt I was betrayed.

I stopped talking to him for a while, but realized that I could no longer hide my feelings. I was beginning to like him. That’s when I challenged him to proceed with our previous agreement for him to come and meet me. He was about 250 miles away and had to travel overnight. When I saw him for the first time, I knew I loved him.

From then on, we officially became a couple. For 6 consecutive months, he came to see me on a regular/monthly basis. I was the happiest whenever I was with him. He’s sweet then. Calls and text messages bound us when we’re apart. Despite our moments together, me asking about his plans to leave the church was a big no-no. If I would insist such topic, we’d end up fighting so to avoid this, I stopped talking about it.

When meet-ups became seldom, as he was ‘busy’ with his duties, I realized that I couldn’t live with this. I would come over and visit him. We’d normally stay in a place quite far from his parish to be a little discreet. When he was attending his church obligations, he would totally forget communicating with me. I would attempt to contact him and he usually reasoned out that he’s busy with ‘work’ and will get in touch when he’s free. I settled for this arrangement, but at times, I would demand his time and again, ended up fighting. As of this year, we met only twice. I went over his place last March and he came over last May. Quite a very long gap considering that he’s just 250 miles away.

When we’re ok, we’re really ok. But when we fight, it would last for 3 days, became a week, then a month and the last one is already running 1.5 months now. this last argument was about my text message that he failed to reply, allegedly due to his low mobile phone battery level. Sounds too petty for a fight this long.

I terribly miss him. I want to start the conversation so we can get back to what we used to be. I feel so sad. He hadn’t exerted any effort to contact me. It occurred to me almost everyday to think of making the first move so we can be back to normal and continue our relationship. However, what if he’s been waiting all along for this relationship to collapse so he can move on with his own life without me? What if I was not the only one? I tried telling him many times that if he wants to end our relationship, he can just tell me and I will oblige. But he would always tell me that he doesn’t want to lose me. He’s doing otherwise with the situation we have now.

FYI, there’s zero effort for him to start leaving the church to live a life with me.

At the beginning of your relationship, what kind of messages were they…(eg what’s your work? Are you single? etc….) Not to be intrusive but we need to add some details to your story. How did he present himself in the social medium?

Yes, Rev. basic question & answer for two strangers, our respective daily routines, career, family background, stuff like that. He started asking for my mobile phone number since day one of our conversation. I just preferred that we just get to know one another over instant messaging. This lasted for about a month. When I had to leave the city for some fieldwork where internet connection was intermittent, I gave him my twitter account.

What made you decide to meet face to face?

Even before he admitted his being a priest, we had already decided to meet, depending on his availability, as he’s the one coming over to my city. On my part, I am curious of course. I met the guy on the net. It’s instinct that one would want to personally meet the guy. Further, I was somehow challenged when I found out that he’s a priest. Why does he have to make moves of meeting women on internet for purposes of intimate relationships? Further, before he admitted his status, he told me that I had the right to know because he felt something for me and for me to accept him hundred per cent, I had to know who he really was. After his confession, my initial reaction was anger and the feeling of deceit. Then when I realized that I really liked him, that’s when I thought of meeting him as planned.

Why didn’t you stop there…what was so interesting about him?

Again, it’s curiosity and challenge of being romantically engaged to someone like him. Prior to him, my last relationship was 6 years ago. Somehow, I got excited with the idea of having a new relationship, this time a very different and risky one. I stopped talking to him for a while, but realized that I can no longer hide my feelings. I was beginning to like him.

What was so charming about him?

That’s when I challenged him to proceed with our previous agreement for him to come and meet me. He was about 250 miles away and had to travel overnight. When I saw him for the first time, I knew I loved him.

Why? Was there any physical contact between the two of you?

The fact that someone who’s meeting me for the first time and who had to travel for like 9 hours was right there, in front of me, left a lot from his hands and found time for me was in itself a big plus factor to like him and eventually, love him. Or it could have also been the fact that after a long time, finally, somebody came and made me feel important. As for physical contact, yes there was.

From then on, we officially became a couple. For 6 consecutive months, he came to see me on a regular/monthly basis. I was the happiest whenever I was with him. He was so sweet then. Calls and text messages bonded us when we’re apart. Despite our moments together, I couldn’t ask questions about his plans to leave the church. It was a big no-no. If I would insist such topic, we’d end up fighting so to avoid this, I stopped talking about it.

What makes a woman go against common sense? There was no way forward but you still continued to meet him……

Feelings and emotions had been invested. I must have been blinded by love. And for the longest time, that love gave me all the reasons to ignore what’s lacking in us. To thank for whatever he could give and control myself from asking what he couldn’t. When meet-ups became seldom, as he was ‘busy’ with his duties, I realized that I couldn’t live with this.

Why don’t you forget all about him and move forward? What’s holding you to this unavailable person?

I wanted to make the relationship work because I didn’t want to lose him, so if he couldn’t make it, then I felt that it was my obligation to do things in his favour. Somehow, I developed co-dependency issues with him along the way.

I would come over and visit him. We’d normally stay in a place quite far from his parish to be a little discreet. Just so you know, when he’s attending his church obligations, he would totally forget communicating with me. I would attempt to contact him and he usually reasoned out that he’s busy with ‘work’ and will get in touch when he’s free. I settled for this arrangement, but at times, I would demand his time and again, ended up fighting. As of this year, we met only twice. I went over his place last March and he came over last May. Quite a very long gap considering that he’s just 250 miles away.

When we’re ok, we’re really ok. But when we fight, it would last for 3 days, became a week, then a month and the last one is already running 1.5 months now. This last argument was about my text message that he failed to reply, allegedly due to his low mobile phone battery level. Sounds too petty for a fight this long.

I terribly miss him. I wanted to start the conversation so we can get back to what we used to be.

Do you realise that maybe it’s all over? Why do you keep contacting him when he showed you that he doesn’t care about you?

At first, I didn’t want to entertain the idea that it’s over. but looking back at how we went through the past 2 years, I realized that there was no turning back. The relationship was ending. Most of the time, I’m still in denial but at this point in time, I’m finally rationalizing. I had been too unfair to myself because I let him treat me like a doormat. After our last fight during mid-August, I never contacted him any more. I see him online most of the time on Facebook but I just ignore it. If he can manage not to worry for me, I’m sure, I can do it too no matter how hard it may be.

I feel so sad. He hadn’t exerted any effort to contact me. It occurred to me almost everyday to think of making the first move so we can be back to normal and continue our relationship. However, what if he’s been waiting all along for this relationship to collapse so he can move on with his own life without me? What if I’m not the only one? I tried telling him many times that if he wants to end our relationship, he could  just tell me and I would have obliged. But he would always tell me that he didn’t want to lose me. He’s doing otherwise with the situation we have now. Finally, there’s zero effort for him to start leaving the church to live a life with me.

On the priest’s part: If there is no effort to leave the church, than what’s the use of having a deep relationship with a woman?

Maybe he wanted to pass his time and I was unfortunately the one who got trapped in his bait. or he just wanted to satisfy his physiological needs. I don’t know. The only thing I was 100% sure of was that I truly loved him, but I was never loved back.

Thanks Rev Daniel for taking time for this story. I don’t know until when i’m gonna cry at night and remember his face and his unfair treatment to me. I know I still love him, but I’m trying to love myself more this time.

Priests are not robots. They experience, think and reflect on their experience. Like all people they face crisis. Now the crisis brings them face to face with a choice: either they change the church or else they are forced to leave. No priest ever dreamed of leaving the church. Yet, experience shows them another face of the church. It’s not the idea of a church presented in their theological books or in their early teens’ years where everything was rosy and charming. It is the real church where at times superiors stop some priests from doing some sterling work just for a slim excuse. Other priests recount incredible, horrible stories. Other priests find difficulties in working with the faithful. It seems that some of the laity want the church to remain tied to the middle ages! Some priests find people who are unchurched, more willing for some changes in the church. All this would lead to one decision: leave to work in a greener area.

We like this book (Why we walked away) for one particular reason: it makes people aware that priests do not leave just because they fall in love with a woman! There are so many issues going on internally in a priest’s life. The woman comes in because she listens carefully and is so understanding to the priest’s life situation. On her part, she sees the priest so loving, charming and full of good principles which is a turn on in itself. Married priesthood is not just about sex but rather a new enriching life style i.e. his experience in his family, helps him to manage the larger community. It helps him to formulate the thinking of the church, the spirituality etc….

This book is another addition to our wonderful collection. We are always happy that writers dedicate more time to the issue of priests who walk away. We are aware that the expression walk away might convey the meaning of running away from something….in actual fact, some of the married priests are still serving, though under new conditions, where in most cases, they feel more free to act. Ultimately it proves that they did not run away at all.


I would like to comment on the review published Aug 29th in the Evanston Indiana Courier & Press (printed below) of a new book titled Why We Walked Away by Phillip Field et al. (Libra Agni, 2014). The fact that the author, and presumably his companions number exactly 12, one has to ask: is it a coincidence?

The reasons they give for “walking away” are accurate enough, as far as it goes, but leaves out a major factor: There seems to be no mention of the celibacy issue, at least from the reviewer, Sarah Corrigan. But I’m biting my tongue; to even call it an “issue” is inaccurate, because having a girl-friend or even in some cases, a wife — the situation of most of the men that left — was not an academic question. It was not an “issue,” it was a life choice; and in the context of a job description that called for a vow of celibacy from young men, many of whom had never even kissed a girl by age 26 when we were ordained, pitted raw unintegrated humanity against naïve rationalized delusion. The “reforms” that Vatican II helped us imagine, included a recognition that these life choices were an integral part of the picture; human sexuality cannot be dismissed in any re-definition of the religious community. The obdurate insistence on doing so has exploded in the paedophile scandals and the hierarchy’s hasty decision to cover them up. A recognition of the sexual dimension in “why we walked away” would make this book more authentic in my estimation, though its absence may simply be the omission of the reviewer who may be unsympathetic to the problems of male sexual repression and found it, as a reason for leaving, politically unimpressive. Corrigan’s review suggests these men were heroes and martyrs. That may or may not have been the authors’ intentions, but if they were anything like us, they did what was right, but they were neither.

Having said that, I don’t mean to downplay the social and political disagreements that also motivated quitting; they would have made it impossible for us to work in that Church with that hierarchy and those values, even if the celibacy “issue” had been resolved to our satisfaction. But it’s not even possible to imagine such a resolution without there having occurred a simultaneous change in the reactionary values defended by this hierarchy affecting all social and political matters across the board. All these “issues” — social, political and life-choice — are intrinsically entwined and inter-related. It’s not easy to demonstrate that in our over-rationalized / compartmentalized world. But leaving it out in the interests of self-justification does not help … at all.

Tony Equale

EVANSVILLE, Ind. – In the decades between 1975 and 2008, more than 18,000 U.S. Roman Catholic priests walked away from their calling, said Phillip Field, of Evansville, who was among them. Worldwide, that number was closer to 120,000, he said.

In their departures, which were often sudden, priests left their parishioners without explanation.
They remained silent — as did their bishops — creating an information void that parishioners filled with their own wildly varied guesses. In “Why We Walked Away” (Libra Agni, 2014) 12 such priests, including Field and his two brothers, Clark and Bill, explain their experiences as priests and their decisions to leave.

The stories are compelling and at times heart-wrenching, as the authors plumb the depths of their personal struggles — not with God, but with the hierarchy of the Catholic Church and its at-times soul-crushing resistance to change. It will likely offend some.

Generally, these 12 stories come from an era of great social upheaval and change in America — the 1960s and 1970s and, not coincidentally, the impact of Vatican II. In addition to the Field brothers, submissions are from Joe Kirsch, Ed Griffin, John Ardizzone, John Raymaker, Carl Roos, Jerry Griffith, Dick Eckel, Jim Koerber and Gerry Charbonneau.

From the introduction: “These 12 tried to implement the changes of Vatican II. They were opposed at every turn … when they caused trouble bishops moved them from parish to parish like pawns on a chessboard … (and) these priests started to leave.”
But the volume is not a vengeful tell-all, Clark Field said.

It details history of the mid-20th Century American Catholic Church from a rarely offered and largely unflattering perspective, but it is dedicated to Pope Francis who, “…has made it clear he wants the church to become the home of all. “He has reached out to the homeless, those outside the church seeking the truth … he does not mince words. He has shown over and over again that the trappings of a former age must be left behind so as to speak to the modern world.

“We 12 who have left the active ministry … have not given up ministering. We hope the struggles this book describes can serve as a point of reference for lay people who seek to understand how priests today could best function in a world ever more in need of evangelization.”
That being said, Phillip Field said the book’s introduction is important to understanding where the church was 50 years ago and where it is today and how, in many regards, things have not changed much.

“The Laments” was the opening session at last year’s conference of the Association of U.S. Catholic Priests, he said.

A selection of priestly laments from that session is included in the introduction and shows, Field said, how little has changed in 50 years.
“The main differences today being the influence of Pope Francis and the hope priests have now that they will be heard,” he said.
“Fifty years ago, leaving the priesthood was the only option.”

Sara Anne Corrigan

Secret Relationships with priests

Relationships are common like air. Everybody is in a kind of relationship: at home; at work or with neighbours. The surprise is, that like parenthood, very few receive any kind of instructions or training. When things go wrong, people realise that something important is missing. People are aware of the importance to cultivate free, positive, healthy and educational relationships.

The relationship between a woman and a priest is no exception although it has its own peculiarities. Several of the readers who write about their hidden love, seems to be unaware of some basic needs/information about relationships. We are trying to make some people aware of some pitfalls before undergoing or letting go into such relationships.

Any relationship needs some basic things to survive. Let’s try to write about some of them.

Communication: Each one of us needs to tell our significant other about our daily events, the pros and the cons of our life etc… the fact that for most of our woman, the priest does not communicate or else communicates in a very strange way, is an indication that the relationship has already some major problems. Communication is a thermometer which indicates the level of strength or weakness of a relationship. No communication is equal to no relationship at all.

Mr Evasive: Any relationship involves two persons. Now maybe one is already dreaming of the priest as a future husband, plus children etc.. but does the priest think in the same way? It’s incredible how some women run really fast in a relationship whilst the priest may simply be, first having fun or else, emptying his reproductive sacks! Did some of our women check what the priest really wants from such a relationship? Is he going to be committed to you? People have a habit of procrastination or be very evasive when faced with deep questions. As we amply wrote last time, one cannot be evasive for too long. A time frame makes sure that beyond a certain time frame, one needs to let go and forget all about the priest. If not, one is letting himself become abused by the priest.

Secrecy: We understand that most loving relationships are not born by choice involving a woman and a priest. We understand the need for secrecy at the beginning of a clandestine relationship and for a certain period of time. But would you like to live all your life in secrecy? Would you accept that you can never walk hand in hand with him in public? Would you accept the fact that you can never have your own house where to live twenty four hours with your loved one? If she doesn’t have a problem with secrecy than surely she is going to hit the wall at an incredible speed. The pain will surely be unbearable at that very moment.

The significant other: the beauty of a relationship is that one comes close to another person and sees his/her personal life. Priests have a knack of preaching to others and hide behind several masks. Incredibly you might not get to know the real person. Please forget what the priest might tell you. Remember that priests are very good, persuasive talkers. They might chat about many subjects yet avoid to tell you how they really feel. They might emphasize about how bad his superiors are and/or other situations in the church, yet he does not share with you how is he going to face the situation nor does he mention any concrete steps how to come out of it. For a change look at facts! They speak louder. Does he flirt with other women? Is he just experimenting with your body? Priests lack physical and intimate contact, hence if you give him permission to touch you, he might be just releasing some physical and sexual tensions.

Loneliness: Is the priest just passing through a middle age crisis or is he just feeling lonely? In some cases the priest might look at you, first as a close friend (maybe with sexual benefits), but nothing less and nothing more! He might use you for some weeks or months, never to be seen again. This is because he is using your relationship just to fill his empty and lonely soul. If you listen to him with your mind rather than with your heart, you might get the hidden message. Homilies indirectly reveal a lot about his psychological being. One needs to listen attentively and connect the missing dots. When you read between the lines, what is he trying to say (the unsaid words)?

Daydreaming: This sounds sinister and odd yet very true. Some women incredibly make up a whole story just because the priest paid some special attention in just one occasion! Fantasies or thoughts do not constitute a real and true relationship! It has to be real. One cannot exchange just a few glances with a real relationship. How can one be sure of a relationship if there has never been a real dialogue? It’s just a waste of time and energy which will definitely lead to a great depression. One cannot live his whole life imagining what if…..

The Real One: We might have given the impression that all relationships with priests will fail. No it’s not true. There is the priest who has taken the necessary time for reflection and he has definitely decided to leave the parish. He faces the big decision on his own. Separately he has thought a lot about having a full relationship with a woman. These two great decisions should never be mixed up together. Each one of them should be examined carefully and separately. The priest should take a decision after a long time of reflection and discernment. This applies especially to the case when his woman is pregnant. The priest, although he has to accept his paternal responsibilities, must not be forced to marry. He needs to take one step at a time.

In many cases, the married priest, if all decisions were taken in a mature way, should have a wonderful relationship with his future wife. It proves that in a mature relationship, the priest can lead a healthy, spiritual life where he could be of a better service to the whole community. One can easily google the many cases where the priests live happily with their wives. The community can testify that in most cases, one can notice the positive change in the priest leading their parish in a married state. The number of married priests is increasing all the time in the Catholic Church. This is a positive seed which might grow bigger and give more bountiful results.

I was approached by a very popular US TV station who wants to make more people aware about secret relationships with Priests. It is a big plus for our cause of optional celibacy in priesthood. If you feel strong enough to tell your story in front of a TV camera, you should not miss this golden opportunity. Just remember how many more people are suffering in silence, Your testimony could bring hope to others. Please Help!

An award-winning television production company is currently casting priests/ ministers to be featured in a new docu-series for a major cable network.

Are you a priest or minister involved in a relationship with a woman, despite your loyalties to the Church? Are you trying to keep that relationship hidden for fear of meeting disapproval? Are you determined to pursue marriage–irrespective of external pressure and prejudice, and finally confront the public about the life you’ve been keeping from them?

A team of veteran producers (fifteen plus years in the docu-television industry) is developing a six part docu-series exploring the challenges of remaining celibate in the modern era. We are looking to talk to and feature priests who are experiencing precisely this conflict, and who feel compelled to hide their relationships or risk losing their affiliation with the ministry. 

The series is intended to educate audiences about the intensity of this struggle, and to provide willing candidates with the opportunity and stimulus to achieve peace of mind.

To learn more about this opportunity and speak with an associate, please contact SecretLoveCasting@gmail.com

Time Machine

We make appointments, meetings because of time. How can we meet if we don’t refer to time? We look at our wrist watches or mobile phones to see what time is it as otherwise we would feel lost.

How about when we refer to time not as hours or seconds but rather years? Today we wish to refer to time when it comes to a relationship between a woman and a priest. To write frankly, there are many women out there who simply keep hoping that one day their priest may decide to marry them and form a family. In this context we wish to refer to time as the time needed for the priest to give his final, honest answer to the woman’s proposal.

Being a married priest site, it doesn’t mean that all priests are good for marriage! Maybe it would be possible for some of them when they make some radical transformations in their life! We are not on a witch hunt to look for all priests and to get them married. We are in favour of optional celibacy. We are aware that most of the priests never dreamt of falling in love with a woman. The same goes for some of the women who feel trapped in this Ecclesiastic net. Yet these things happen to all but especially to priests who are leading a lonely life. Priests were trained in theology and philosophy but they did not receive any instructions when it comes to emotions, relationships, middle age life crisis etc….in most cases

As a married priest website we’re not in favour of clandestine relationships, at least as a permanent solution. This is because in our experience, the relationship with a priest from the point of view of the woman is not a joke. She invests all her energy, emotions, spirituality etc….It’s not kind to take her for a ride. On the priest’s part we are aware that the stakes are very high too. In this sense we don’t support priests who simply keep their woman hanging on.

Any relationship has to grow or else it dies. We can refer to the example of a plant. We cannot force it to remain a plant but it has to grow into a tree. If not, it will surely die. We wish to emancipate the women in order to be strong enough to call for an ultimatum to their priests: When are you going to decide what to do with your life?

Most priests will try to avoid a fixed date for various reasons. They would answer….I still have to talk to….Give me another year till I finish…….the Superior told me to wait for another year….the list of lies is endless. To add insult to injury the priest might be in a new relationship with another woman!

But this is where time plays an important part. Time is the ruler with which women can be sure of their love. If he thinks that his work is more important, or that what the people/his family might say is more important, than he is not worthy of your love. The woman cannot wait for ever. Maybe her biological clock is already ticking away….We are of the opinion to put a reasonable date for the priest to decide. Beyond that, it’s all a waste of time and energy.

Now we know that in most cases the woman does all the thinking about the attitude of her priest, their relationship, their future etc…whilst the priest is a happy go lucky guy. On the other hand some priests do send conflicting messages. At times they are so loving, understanding, romantic etc… that the woman might think that the great decision is not far away. In other days, he is back to a severe man who does not want any type of relationship with any woman! This puts the woman in a dilemma unable to decipher the kind of relationship she has with the priest. She cannot understand how priests can be so cruel, incredibly difficult to understand and as cold as ice at times.

It’s because the priest is trained to rationalise his actions: on one hand there is his inner true self (loving one) fighting for survival, on the other hand there is the traditional teaching (No woman as a friend) he received during his training years. Hence it’s like having dual personality.

In most cases the woman, who is madly in love, is deeply hurt. Surprisingly she keeps hoping notwithstanding the harsh treatment by her beloved priest. We know that the longest journey in the world is between the mind and the heart. We know too that it’s so difficult to convince somebody who is in love that his love is going onto the rocks.

It’s so difficult to explain to many women that the final answer will never come in most cases! It has been so difficult to drive the point home. But how can one understand the attitude of women who keep hoping against all hope? It seems that most of the them keep living in the clouds for too many years. Although we’re speaking to an international readership where it’s so difficult to generalise, yet our experience teaches us that if the priest does not decide within the first year, most probably he will never say yes.

Hereafter it makes sense to propose a fixed time frame in which the priest has to give a final answer. Obviously no ifs or any other kind of excuses would suffice. When the time frame expires, than it will be the time to move on for the woman. We hope of being of a good guide to the many women who write to us, week after week. We are trying to give a message to all.

We are still of the opinion that when they do click together, than the whole Catholic community sees the fruit of a healthy relationship. A happy married priest is like a happy worker: he will work more and more to the benefit of the surrounding community.

The number of new readers that find our website is very encouraging. We do not market our site. But most of our readers are using the internet to find other people who fell in love with priests. They are pro-active people who use the internet to find a community with similar spiritual growth. This is the beauty of the internet where there is no need to catch and pay for an expensive flight. There are no time zones problem. We write messages to other people who may live thousands of kilometres away. Most of them are happy, that, when they wake up, they find an answer for their question. So when you’re sleeping, somebody might be reading and answering your question!

We just appeal to everybody. If you want more stories like these, please don’t be afraid of sharing your experience with other readers. If you want we can change some of the information so as NOT to give away your exact location and place. You might never imagine how much hope and spiritual help your story gives to other readers. One of the most common messages we read is that some claim that they never had an idea that such a website exists! It exists because there is a need for one. It exists because people look for it. It exists because people write their honest experience. Please write! The story of today was found online. This is a free and edited translation from the original Spanish.

I fell in love with a priest, Marcela García Llorente writes for this blog her testimony about a “forbidden love.” Her experience has changed her into an open person who helps others who have experienced something similar but they still prefer to remain in silence: the love that can be born between a priest and a woman.

When one realizes what this means, the first feeling is that of guilt. Paradoxically we label it as “guilt.” Actually it’s a feeling which is more beautiful and sublime than any other human need and experience. It is a love “forbidden” to be born and is therefore condemned to be hidden and underground. I had a loving relationship with a priest for over a year, living all the wonderful experiences that surround love, but not without switching into phases of difficulty, pain, confusion, anxiety and a host of feelings who struggle to find a solution. One of them is that of a deep loneliness… I felt alone in this world. I wondered how many more would live this experience and how they would live. That led me to search tirelessly these people. I still relive the great joy and relief that I felt the day I found the first one. Interestingly and to my surprise it was a priest to whom I confessed to, who was in transition (thinking of leaving active priesthood), because of living through the same situation.

He had lived in the anguish of my love to keep it secret, both to protect it as well also by an immense fear to speak and be judged. Until I lived my difficult separation, I was confined to a great loneliness. My greatest strength was to understand that love also meant “release”, so let it go and wish that you would be immensely happy. All this led me to think about creating a space to facilitate expression of those who needed, since everything we maintain repressed tends to recur repeatedly, even with a progressive increase becoming a powerful source of anxiety, stress or neurosis. This space was not only to support and enrich many people but also for myself.

The patterns behaviours tend to be similar in most cases, abounding the comings and goings, immaturity and coping when major problems occur, the irresponsibility and the “leak syndrome.” Currently I accompany large number of women from different countries and even also some priests and religious to, because like us, they happen to be experiencing the same things. The priest is a human being. At some point in his life, he needs one human affection. Practically he needs a real person. When this happens, he would be swimming in a sea of doubt and they often face the question: Why I will resign from the ministry for which I have prepared and I’ve always wanted to do?

In other cases, with the ambiguous claim of chastity, they play lots of games. These are games of seduction that are not defined and end up affecting both members. The fragility of the individual who is subjected to these internal and external pressures are so great that the person won’t have enough clarity for serious reflection nor for a mature and responsible decision. Each person contacted for the first time perceived one desperate need for help and a great relief to have someone who had lived same experience and listening without judging beforehand, someone to accompany him/her to transit through their experiences, answer questions, heal wounds, understand and see a light in their way forward.

There are many cases of people who have been left with very deep scars, even with total loss of faith or unable to attend Mass because doing so meant reopening his wounds. The healing process usually is very painful to carry it out. Normally it is done without someone to accompany the person. One needs to tackle this heavy weight and achieve some inner peace which allows the individual to clearly discern that path he/she will take. Repression does not solve the problem. The only sin that Jesus appeared to forgive was hypocrisy. I think it does no good to anyone shut these issues because the Gospel says “there is nothing hidden that will not be discovered one day, nothing secret that will not should be known. ” If this situation is not addressed and try to learn it and not deny, no we can never arrive at an understanding of it and think about of a possible solution to many existing cases.


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