It’s very easy to stay closed in a monastery, close to God and forget all about other human beings. A life full of prayer, silence and work in the monastery. That was a good model for the middle ages in the church. Today’s world is challenging not only faith but everything. The way the official catholic church speaks gives the impression that it has all truth and that it’s still closed behind the fortifications. It has forgotten one of the most important documents of Vatican II (meeting for all bishops which took place between 1962-1965): the Church in the World where it looks for dialogue and not condemnation. It tries to hear what the contemporary world has to say.

On the contrary, how the Pope behaved on maundy Thursday shows an FBI tactics. He tried to sow fear in the heart of those who hear God’s call. The Women’s Ordination Conference (WOC) is discouraged that the Pope would use this sacred time in our religious tradition to attack his fellow priests, who in good conscience, support women’s full inclusion in the Roman Catholic Church. It is not these priests who are disobedient, it is the hierarchy who has lost touch with the people of God. 

More than 63 percent of U.S. Catholics, and millions of Catholics worldwide, support the ordination of women. The Vatican’s own Pontifical Biblical Commission found in 1976 that there is no scriptural reason to prohibit the ordination of women.  The Bible describes how women were prominent leaders in Jesus’ ministry and early Christianity.  In all four gospels, Mary Magdalene was the primary witness to the central event of Christianity-Christ’s resurrection. Some priests are brave enough to withstand the storm of criticism and tell the truth!

The tactics being used by the church to silence criticism or any suggestion of married priesthood is NOT healthy at all! Again, we married priests know from personal experience with our grown up children that in today’s world one cannot impose one’s ideas. It would be worse. But it’s only through dialogue that we can reach out, and let’s admit it, our children are NOT wrong in every decision with which we do not agree. Sometimes they teach us lessons. Are the unmarried priests capable to understand this ?

I cannot count how many times I hear the same comment, how can a bunch of men, impose their opinion on married people? How can they understand today’s challenges when they have a protected and easy life? Life in the parish is mostly dictated by the pastor. Life in the world is different where parents have to obey or change their timetable according to their working schedule or children’s appointments! They have to do a lot of sacrifices in order to make both ends meet. In most practical cases they loose their own free time because of their own children or because the frenetic pace of life dictates so. This is the big differences the married priest has. The unmarried one most of the time celebrates mass and then he can pick and choose the type (and time) of work.  Just ask those who made the change from living in a monastery to a common married life to speak about the difference.

In fact one of our surprises has been the dialogue going on in the USA about contraceptives. Contraceptives are NOT there simply to stop pregnancy in married couples. There are many other reasons which unmarried priests ARE not seeing. It simply proves that the Catholic Church simply wishes the people to be either naive or else being headless or without any type of reasoning. I still wish to see a couple, with normal reason capabilities, to reason against contraceptives! In the linked article, the intelligent author Edgar Davies, shows that the issue of the contraception (like that of married priests) has been going on for centuries and people have been brainwashed for so long!! Again, we insist: LISTEN to the living Catholic community.

In the context of all the brain washing and fake traditions which have been going on we wish to convey a very clear and crisp message to all priests who are now married. No you are not wrong! Please continue administering your priesthood with the people who ask for your services.   In a Catholic country like Ireland where one expects the people to be so obedient to the church, most are in favour of married priesthood. 

As the Pope Benedict was so strong in his condemnation of our brethren in Austria, we wish to publish again their thoughts. Needless to say we agree 100% (The following was signed by 400 Austrian priests).

Appeal to Disobedience

The Roman refusal to take up long needed reforms and the inaction of the bishops, not only permits but demands that we follow our conscience and
act independently: We priests want to set a mark for the future:

1. WE WILL include a petition for church reform in every liturgy.

2. WE WILL not deny Communion to faithful of good will, especially remarried people, members of other Christian churches, and in some cases those who have officially left the Catholic Church.*

3. WE WILL avoid as much as possible celebrating multiple times on Sundays and feast days, and avoid scheduling priests traveling around or priests unknown to the community. A locally-planned Liturgy of the Word is preferable to providing guest performances.

4. WE WILL use the term Priestless Eucharistic Celebration for a Liturgy of the Word with distribution of Communion. This is how the Sunday Mass obligation is fulfilled when priests are in short supply.

5. WE WILL ignore the prohibition of preaching by competently trained laity, including female religion teachers. In difficult times, the Word of God must be proclaimed.

6. WE WILL advocate that every parish has a presiding leader man or woman, married or unmarried, full-time or part time. Rather than consolidating parishes, We call for a new image of the priest.

7. WE WILL take every opportunity to speak up publicly for the admission of women and married people to the priesthood. These would be welcome
colleagues in ministry.

We express solidarity with colleagues no longer permitted to exercise their ministry because they have married, and also with those in ministry who live in a permanent relationship. Both groups live in accordance with their conscience as we do with our protest. We see in them as we
do in our bishops and the pope our brothers. **

* Here we refer to those who officially leave the Church; some to avoid Church Tax as a means of protest
** This is a reference to the German Word “Mitbruder” instead of “Bruder” (=brother) which is sometimes used by clerics and excludes the
laity.

Today we sent a previous post which was not ready for publication. It seems that we were trigger happy. Sorry.

Homily {in Maltese}

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