Browsing the internet one finds an infinite number of discussions, opinions etc….but when touching the Catholic Church, notwithstanding the thirst for the truth and the new social phenomena such as Facebook or blogs, one still encounters a big silence. People may have many prejudices when it comes to the church. In part this is the fault of the church as it still does not feel at home with journalists and adult questions. It’s very rare that the church answers some of the most popular questions in a practical way. The church has a long tradition of teaching children. Now children, even the most intelligent and outspoken ones, cannot ask adult questions or read between the lines. So facing adults with awkward questions is still something new in the church.

I feel this when explaining to Catholics the benefits of a married priesthood. Shall I tell them how many priests are sexually active gays? Shall I tell them how many priests abuse their role in the parish and lead an active sexual life after 18 years living in the monastery? I don’t feel at home speaking badly about priests….yet somebody has to tell the truth as otherwise people would think otherwise! The general public is mostly unaware of what happens behind the monastery walls….

This is why the Catholic church has been using silence in its favour by avoiding talking at all. The good point is that avoiding a problem is possible, but deleting the problem is NOT possible, simply by ignoring that it exists!! One day or another, with the inquisitive and social media of today, priests having sexual relationships, will be uncovered. Then we will hear the same answer…they are anti-catholic journalists, atheists etc……but the truth is that the vow of silence would have been broken. We are not inventing the facts but these have been happening for a very long time and nobody dared to report them to the general public.

A good manager sees the problem before it is uncovered. Hence he prepares on how to deal with it. We’ve been insisting that priests are human beings. They face a lot of lonely moments and difficult decisions. They are never prepared, on a human level, to face life all alone. Now during these fragile moments, sexual abuse becomes very attractive. If priests are let to speak freely we would be at least acknowledging the problem! Yet whoever starts the discussion is quietly urged to solve it on his own in private! And we know what that means…go and find a woman but not in your parish!

On the other hand, marrying a woman is not just for sexual hunger but rather for facing life challenges together. We always acknowledge that women have been very important in the history of the church, so in a way, married priesthood is acknowledging their role in the life of a priest. There are numerous advantages for those who interested to discuss the challenge!