Tag Archive: falling in love with a priest


Married Priests: the fine print

How do you feel when a friend forgets all about you, then one fine morning he calls you and asks you a favour? On one hand you are thankful that he/she remembered you. On the other hand you realise that friends are not there simply to be used by others! If friendship has died or has been forgotten, why ask for a favour after such a long pause?

This is the effect married priests feel at this moment in time. Married people will be allowed to become priests but only in areas where priests are needed! In the church where there is a talent, it is for the common good ie for the whole community. So it should be shared even in those churches where apparently there are more priests.

Indirectly one is giving a hidden message. Well we don’t want married priests, but you know, we don’t have priests, our churches are closing. So between two evils let’s go for the lesser evil (ie Married priests)!! We’ll have married priests but only in areas where they are needed urgently!! Maybe a place in the bush where people don’t mind at all having a married priest. Indirectly it’s saying that marriage is not compatible with priesthood. Maybe we still have remnants that marriage is bad or sinful, or in more modern terms, distracts the priest from his daily duties?

Who is judging where the most needed areas are? In today’s world, is it enough to have a sufficient number of priests for the distribution of sacraments? What about evangelisation, especially in Europe? Do we have a sufficient number of priests? Who visits families? What is the place of the priest in today’s cities?

Many of our readers are asking: what about today’s priests? Can they get married? Well we have already stated in the last post that the Pope is looking for married priests to be ordained priests and not priests to get married. But we do agree with most of our readers and ask the same question: why are priests being excluded from marriage? Is it the fear that most of them will be married? Is it the fear that a priest together with his woman would be more difficult to control? Is it the fear that celibacy would be seen in a different light? Is money the problem?

Notwithstanding all the good intentions of the Pope, we didn’t hear of any single place in the world who has officially asked for married priests. Maybe it’s still too early to hear such news?

We don’t know what are the criteria to select these people and/or if there is any age limit. We’re still in the dark in an age when such news travel around the globe with the touch of a button. Maybe the Vatican is still thinking with a medieval age mentality.

Let’s be positive notwithstanding that we don’t see any tangible signs! One of our readers has suggested a poll where we can voice our opinion. Please do visit this site and write your opinion: Link. In the meantime one can write directly to his bishop to voice his/her opinion about married priests. Please remember that if we don’t speak about this issue, nobody will, as most people who are in favour of change are far away from the parish and won’t be attending mass in the near future.

We were happy that most readers sent us quotations from newspapers about the Pope’s recent pronunciations about married priesthood. It seems that finally our readers are taking a more active role. This is the church we want to see worldwide. Baptised people are not simply receivers where they are happy to receive instructions from priests. They have a mind, a soul, a heart and a lot of experience how they experience God. Consequently, God can use anybody to bring changes in His church. This is not just theoretical but practical because the Pope is becoming aware that in most parts of the world, the church is disappearing simply because there is no one to tell people about the Good News. He has to resort to married people as otherwise the consequences could be disastrous.

This is a big improvement because now it’s coming from the mouth of the Pope. Obviously as usual some people are looking for more rapid changes in a shorter time. Some are completely against celibacy. Well we were never against celibacy. We are against celibacy when it is imposed and it is chosen at a very young age (over 18 years of age criteria is simply not enough!). Celibacy has its value in the church. We do believe that there are people who live celibacy in a wonderful way notwithstanding the sexual abuse crisis. Let’s not put all priests in one basket, although we do admit that these are very few.

Some people thought that the Pope would let his priests the liberty of choosing either to remain celibate priests or else get married. In this regard, it seems that he chose a conservative attitude by keeping things as they are. He is for married people who ask for priesthood and not priests who ask for marriage. There could be reasons for this: is he afraid that most priests would go for marriage? Indirectly is he saying that marriage might disrupt the spirituality of priests who are used to live alone? Is he afraid that maybe they need to pay more the priest because he has a family? Or maybe he is going after mature (of a certain age) married people, whose children are married and settled? Implying again that a true family (with young children) would hinder the priest from working in a parish? Again, one might imply that he is looking for mature people (of a certain age) in order to avoid more sex scandals?

On the other hand, calling people to join priesthood, means they need training. That means another challenge for seminaries (places where priests are trained). Are they going to join the celibate ones? Are they going to be trained in a separate place? What about the training years? How much do they need? So in practical terms we still have to wait for seven to eight years more to see married priests. In the meantime we have several priests who are not practising any more that could be called instantly where they can start to serve immediately. What’s wrong with going for this option?

We don’t know what’s inside the mind of the Pope but we were surprised that he let out his opinion with a newspaper. Is it the right channel to give out his views? Or maybe there are problems with the Vatican PRO system? What about the rest of the world? Aren’t there mature people who might give their opinion too? Or are we still in a pyramid where decisions are simply taken by those at the top? This is just one subject where the rest of the world thinks differently than those living inside the Vatican walls…..At least this Pope is more near us mortals, than the rest of the bishops, priests etc….

Again let’s not fall into depression. Let’s not give up! Let’s go for the hard work. We need to go out and share our opinion with the rest of the church. Let’s show them that we’re prepared. We need married priests even where there are a good number of priests. A married priest has a different charisma. He has something which others might not have. On the other hand, the needs of the baptised people are growing. People look out for God especially in dark moments. Where is the priest in such moments if they are so tied to the parish with all its activities? Like children in a family, today’s children need more attention and care then when we used to have sixes and sevens!! Same wise for the church. The church cannot do without a good number of priests, married and non-married ones in these days as the needs of the baptised people grow each day.

When people talk about married priests, it seems as if we are talking about the future such as when aliens will land on earth! Those hearing us discussing about married priesthood might jump into the conclusion that it’s still not being practiced in the Catholic Church. This assumption that we’re talking about future decisions might harm our reputation. Some might nickname us as rebels or people outside the church!

Well there are so many people out there that they don’t know that there are already married priests in the church! If one uses a search engine, one might encounter a lot of such cases. One particular story is found here. So please note that all those people who might start arguing that a married priest might not have enough time for his wife and children, it is already being done!

Obviously, the next question would be: why are Anglican priests allowed to become Catholic priests and bring their wives over whilst Catholic priests have to resign in order to get married?! In our opinion it is pure injustice.

We are of the opinion that people should start asking for married priests now in order that Pope Francis might say yes. He has already shown that he is moving slowly but surely in that direction. But he wants the people to ask for it in their diocese (the geographical place where a bishop and his priests/nuns etc..work together).

We, as a community, we have to understand that we cannot live in the catacombs afraid to mention such subject during our interaction with the rest of the parish! Somebody has to inform the rest of the parish. Somebody has to show the way. This is what it means to be an adult in faith. We cannot rely on others to do this kind of work. Most of the people who would call for married priests are unchurched (not going to church any more). It’s our duty to inform them of the latest changes in the Catholic church. Let’s take it as a challenge or if we wish to, as a lent exercise for this year!

Pope Francis is not a dictator. He wants to move with his flock. People now are experiencing the lack of priests in so many parishes (in the whole wide world except some countries in Africa). Now we either go for married priests or risk of loosing more parishes which would be without the Eucharist. The Eucharist is so central for the Catholic Faith.

    It is the time and place where the community meets (can we have a community if we never meet?).

    During the mass we hear the word of God (can we simply be brainwashed by the media not knowing what God really thinks?).

    We nourish our soul with the body and blood of Christ (can our body grow healthy without eating adequately? Now let’s focus about the food for our soul).

In other words the body and soul of the Catholic Church lies in the Eucharist. Shall we let more parishes die because of lack of priests or shall we move forward and allow more priests (married) to work in the vineyard of the Lord?

There are several ways of how to control people. In the church there has been a very common one : creating a strong sense of guilt. Most people, even if they leave the church, deep down in their hearts there would remain a lurking sense of guilt. In history, there have been several people who opposed the church, yet during their last moments of life on earth, they simply surrendered and gave all property and riches to the church in order to redeem their soul!

The sense of guilt has been built not in one single moment. It has been going on for centuries. The Catholic church has for many centuries, did not build a conscience for adults, but rather a set of directions of what to do and what not to do. It’s no surprise that the recent letter by the Pope has confounded some Catholics. In simple words, they assume that the church should say what’s black and white. Incidentally Pope Francis mentioned the grey colour!! They find it hard now that the present Pope is letting them decide. Most probably it is for the first time in the history of the church that the adults in faith are being treated as adults. They examine their own conscience, listen to God’s voice and decide!

Parents understand it perfectly well, because at one time, one’s child, is going to decide about something which one does not agree to. At one moment, one knows and understands that the child is no longer a child but a fully grown man or woman. He/she now has a different opinion and might make choices which are not according to what parents dictate! It’s the same process which is happening in the church today. Pope Francis is really bringing a revolution without any blood being shed or terrible fights (including that of discussion!!).

One of the main ideas of the so called ‘conservatives’ (ie those who are in favour of the black and white mentality and who won’t accept any exception at all), is that they see the others as sinners. Jesus the shepherd gives us the idea that if he looses one, he goes out of his way to find it. When he finds it, he makes a feast! Are we looking for the so called the ‘missing ones’?

How about walking in their boots for one day? How would we see reality? How would one see the church? The advantage of being a married priest is that people, knowingly or unknowingly feel more at ease to discuss matrimonial challenges. We have been living this kind of theology (ie starting from experience and NOT from some medieval teaching) for many years now (much before the latest letter from the Pope).

But let’s focus on the fact of a women falling in love with a priest. We have been insisting for many years now that falling in love is not simply a button to be pressed at will. It can happen to everybody, saints and sinners and all!

Women and men meet at a certain date. It could be a casual encounter or one which leaves deep imprints. Whatever happens, we do believe that God is speaking to both persons. It’s not fair and just simply to tell any one of them to forget and go away. After all we preach and say that God is love! So why when love is round the corner we simply give it another name: temptation?

Obviously we are not referring to a passing crisis or infatuation. We have in mind several couples who although they stayed far away from each other with no contact for a long time, they both discovered that they have to share their journey of life together!

I’ve been asked several times to assist such couples which I happily do. Yet it doesn’t mean that I have to decide. It’s the couple who need to take such decision. We can only help them mature and make a sound decision whilst taking into consideration several challenges and trials. Indirectly we are breaking the sense of guilt that many priests who love their woman (and vice-versa), feel. Obviously we don’t expect to break this sense of guilt immediately after so many centuries of pure brain washing. Yet we are confident that no wall cannot be broken down to single stones to let people discover new areas of teaching in the church.

Our woman today is Dorothy. She was a former nun who became a policewoman (cop). She fell in love with a handsome and intelligent man (got his PhD), who happened to be a priest too. It seems that he presented himself as a priest who had left…but actually reading official documents, he didn’t leave at all. Like some other priests he wanted to have the best of both worlds: the married life and the celibate life!

This does not mean that all priests are like him. Some of the priests turn out to be wonderful fathers. Yet there is always a slight possibility that a priest is luring a woman for sex and just to have fun. It’s up to the mind of the woman to make sure that the priest is not playing at all. We are all in favour of married priests. Married means to stick to one woman and to take responsibility for one’s actions. We are NOT in favour of priests who just go around and use women for their own egoistic needs.

Where did you meet?

We met in Eldoret in 2005 at a convent where I was was being inculcated into sisterhood. Then based in Spain, Fr Oure had visited the convent on official assignment. The priest, however, showed interest on the first encounter.

What did he tell you when you met?

He lied to me about his exact role in church. Fr Oure would then make frequent visits to the nunnery, where he made sexual advances towards me.

When did you get married?

We married when I was 32 years old and he was 49, in December 2013, but we started experiencing problems barely three months into their marriage. He is a serial womaniser and his constant infidelity is the reason for our constant fights before we parted ways recently. I caught my husband in bed with another woman in our house in Nakuru’s Kasarani estate!

Do you have children?

Yes we have one son but I had miscarriage of our second child as this was caused by physical abuse by Fr Oure. He became so angry when I caught him on our matrimonial bed
with a prostitute!

What do you have in mind now?

I want to sue the church for damages as his order says that he is still ‘in’ the church.

Now for fairness sake, the priest is presenting a different version of facts but he didn’t deny sleeping with other women! So indirectly he had admitted to not being faithful. Like some other priests, he is not interested in marriage but in a concubine, where secretly he can have sex as much as he wants to! One can see the original article at: Article

Reading and reflecting through our readers comments, views, spirituality etc…sometimes one gets the idea that because we are baptised, we should have an easy life!

Our Catholic sign is the Cross. We were never promised a rose garden! Psychologically and spiritually we should prepare ourselves for challenges 24/7. We have to convince a lot of people because the Catholic Church is composed of more than 1 billion people. Not everybody sees the urgency in calling for married priesthood! Not everybody agrees with our ideas. Shall we drop our ‘fighting’ spirit? Shall we enclose ourselves in our small world? No way!

We are sure that we are on the right track because finally the Pope is pushing forward the same ideas! That means a lot in at least giving us credit that we are not damaging the church! In every parish there is the urgent need of more priests. Why? Because priests are what cement is to building blogs, they serve to build the sense of a spiritual community. Although we are calling all laity to become truly adult in faith (actively participating in the parish), priest are always needed as they the ones who can confess and celebrate the unique sacrament of the Eucharist.

Besides, the priest can visit many families to bring God’s news. The priest has to preach and teach the people of God not only about God himself but rather bring the latest teaching of the church to the common people. It’s not a joke because there is a lot of ignorance outside the parish about God, the church and its rules etc….

The latest news from Ireland seems that the bishops are NOT going to take the Pope’s invitation and ask about priests to be allowed to get married! Well, it’s not the end of the story. We urge all our readers from Ireland (and non-Irish readers) to write to the bishops to urge them change their mind. We need active readers who are not afraid of challenges. You can write directly to the Irish bishops here!

On the other hand, on a different subject but regarding another hot potato for bishops, Maltese bishops surprised everyone about their attitude when dealing with remarried people. The Maltese bishops were bold enough to take the first step instead of waiting to see what others might do. They interpreted the Pope’s letter to the world called, Amoris Laetitia (The Joy of Love). If one needs to read the Pope’s original document, one can go here.

So please don’t lose faith! Let’s keep going. Let’s keep talking and discussing with other people. A married priest is nearer to the common people. All that he does, shows his commitment to his family. He is not a loner, he is accompanied by a family. He cannot forget about what other people are passing through because he has his own kids who are facing all the challenges of the common people.

The news is out…Brazil may soon have married priests. Who said so? It’s a famous theologian with the name of Leonardo Boff. He was once a member of the Franciscan order, as he left the order some years ago. He fits our description of priest really well.

How does he know about all this? Because he knows that the Brazilian bishops have explicitly asked for married priests. The pope wants to introduce married priesthood. Brazil maybe the country to experiment, sort of like a pilot experiment.

Boff boasts of having helped Pope Francis with his environmental encyclical, “Laudato Si’, on Care for Our Common Home.”! So it all shows that Boff is being welcomed once again to the official church.

An important comment was: will he work once again as a priest? Boff answered (as we have been constantly harping), there is no need, because he continued to help with the building of the basic communities, including the administration of the sacraments! In other words, once a priest, always a priest!

What does it mean for all of us? First of all, it shows that we were right from the very first step to insist on married priesthood. It wasn’t a sin or in theological words anathema! We were not outside the biblical basis. Our reasoning has a biblical basis which is a very strong point when dealing with arguments in theology.

Now the final practical part. When will it happen in your country? That is the question that we cannot give a definite answer. But instead of rushing, Pope Francis has shown the hand of a true father who does not wish to make his children run. He wants to give some time before it is introduced, so that many Catholics may come to terms with it. Now this is the most interesting part because most church goers have already accepted the idea of married priesthood! So it’s not too far away from making it happen in the whole church.

In the meantime, let’s not stand with our hands still and doing nothing. Let’s start talking, writing, communicating with other members in order to help Pope Francis in bringing over such change. If one does not feel comfortable in his community…there is the internet. It’s so huge and vast. One can go elsewhere to give the news and stimulate discussion. Although the best solution would be to speak with your own community. This means not imposing or shutting up people who do not agree but rather speaking calmly but surely about the beauty of married priesthood.

The Pope cannot do changes all alone. True leaders wait for the people in order to walk together. If we don’t make our move, it might be fatal. Let’s shout from our roofs’, balconies etc…..Let’s have priests like the biblical ones…..married and very close to Jesus!

The original article can be found here.

One of the most important aspects of this blog, is that women are giving a wonderful insight about falling in love with a priest. They are showing a new kind of theology, one that speaks from the heart. One that starts from real experience.

On the other hand, we feel responsible to provide the missing link….how the priest thinks, behaves and decides. What makes a priest decide to stay?

Is it a spiritual reason? In very few cases yes. The priest believes that his love affair was something that brought about a big change in his life but it encouraged him to tune in or invest, in a better relationship with God, the church and in the case of a religious priest, to lighten up his fraternity.

In most cases, though, we believe that other reasons hold the priest on a ‘ransom’.

One of the most common reasons is that of brain washing. The priest has been bombarded with the same message for years. How can he now let go of all of it? It’s still a common culture in seminaries (place where priests are trained), to keep some distance from women; to take extra care; don’t give too much personal attention; don’t show too much interest; some are outright and very explicit against women that they see them as ‘devils’……..

The fact that a priest finds some time to talk to a woman outside the priest-penitent relationship, might already make him feel guilty! The concept of ‘sin’ is carved inside the skin of a priest and it may play havoc with a relationship. Excommunication is another word which has lost meaning for today’s world but NOT for the priest. He might be excommunicated (send off, he won’t be part of the church officially) if he marries a woman without dispensation (permit from the Pope). All this forms part of a legal framework which many women find hard to understand, let alone digest. Now applying for a dispensation may become a nightmare for the priest as they ask so many intimate questions (and against human rights), that makes him feel like an ant…..in other words it’s like a rape.

The hidden message is that if one wants to get out, he has to bare it all, or it’s like putting the soul in the nude. Some people think that God’s judgement won’t be that harsh or that deep!! The worst of all is that the priest has to admit that he has fallen and cannot live the gospel! The official words would be: from priesthood he is to be reduced to the lay (ie means not a priest and neither a religious person who lives in a monastery) state!!!

All of this creates a barrier for the priest to decide. It makes it practically impossible to leave.

He’s used to speak to a crowd but not to a one to one relationship. He’s used to have a ‘platform’ ie to speak with authority. How can he make himself vulnerable to a woman? He is caught unawares falling in love, because he feels so uncomfortable in a relationship. Normally he sees many people but nobody stays with him to get to know him so well.
Another big hurdle is that of the safety net within the church where he receives money plus lots of benefits (including retirement). If he goes out, most of his ecclesiastical certificates count to nothing (unless a good job counsellor teaches him how to translate his skills into a normal job vocabulary).

In most cases he needs a place to live…maybe the present one is in the parish or where people have known him as a priest in a parish…..now the same people look at him differently!!! In other words he needs to move out and most probably he needs help to sell his apartment and buys another one. In the case of the religious priest, in most cases he doesn’t have money at all to buy basic necessities, let alone an apartment!!!! So it makes it 100% impossible to leave.

The priest as an unmarried priest relies heavily on his family. What does his family say? Can he go against them if they don’t agree? Most probably his family understands his decision. They can’t see him suffer anymore…..but what is the problem? They can’t face the people because they are going to be victims too (this could be the major reason why they don’t side with him!!!), which brings us to the gossip problem.

The hear say or the gossip reason, is the one which the priest preached against, now is one of the major reasons why it makes his life so miserable. It’s not only him but her as well. She might be easily slandered and nicknamed unchristian names!!! It’s so hard for a public figure to make that change. Most woman don’t understand the public role a priest has. Everybody looks up to him. Now the column of the town has left…..most people don’t like uncertainty and consequently they make the priest pay heavily for that. Other people have confessed crimes etc….now they see him holding hands…..they might feel vulnerable and crossing unchartered waters.

These are only some of the reasons. We leave the rest to our intelligent and God seeking readers to explain more fully and to write about other reasons too. May God Bless you all! You have given birth to a new theology, one that makes God incarnated (born of flesh) into our unique and personal lives. Happy Christmas to all!

An invisible Priest

We’ve had a record number of responses from our readers to our latest article. We’ve been waiting for a long time to read the message of a priest who is deciding whether to leave the parish and join his woman, or abandon her, and continue with the work in the parish. We wish to say a big thank you to all our readers.

Well some of the readers did not agree with the latest posting. I did leave their message online in order to have a blog which is nearer the truth rather than have one which is all positive and everything is fine. Well the priest who leaves the parish in order to marry, makes a bold statement whether he is conscious of it or not. Now some parishioners are not prepared to handle the truth.

We remember ourselves passing through some of the streets of our town (we live on a very small island!!). Some people just looked the other way. I was shocked at first but with some counselling I realised that they couldn’t handle our new situation. Some of them were embarrassed because they had come to confession and they had ‘emptied their sack’ (as an old saying goes), full of shocking secrets. It happened to our Lord Jesus Christ when he was resurrected. He was the same person, yet nobody was prepared to handle his new situation. In fact, at first, they didn’t recognize Him!

Some of our regular readers were shocked at first by the response of a few of them. Well not all people are going to be happy that Patrick and Michelle are going to get married. Indirectly they are saying: if a priest leaves, I feel at a loss because I’m used to certainties, dogma, truths. Now everything is upside down and I can’t control the situation anymore! So I panick and protest and put all my anger on to such a lovely couple!!

On the other hand, many more people will be happy for both of them. There will be many people who will come forward and understand their challenges and help them. It’s a test time to see who the real friends are…..!!!! Patrick and Michelle, you’re going to be surprised for sure!

One of the most incredible surprises was my late mum who was a priest lover (in the right sense). When I told her some of the true stories about what happens on the inside of the human church she surprised me with a unique response: If I knew about what you were experiencing, I would have come for you, prepared your bags, and took you home! A devout or traditional mum obeys the church…..yet she has a heart which understands what other human beings do not understand!

Other couples were happy because they knew that as a married couple, we were in a better position to understand and minister to them. And this was another surprise for us. We never thought of working again in the church (I would scare people away, one parish priest told me!!), yet the new community was forming in a lovely and surprising manner. One is this huge following on the internet. The other are the true friends who ask me for the sacraments plus spiritual help because they truly believe that once a priest always a priest. At the beginning I was at the point of refusing. But one of them, who knows well the laws of the church, quoted one law which says that a priest cannot refuse a person who is asking for spiritual help (sacramental or not)!

To cut a long story short, I thought that once I leave the parish, I would pack my priestly things and I would have never used them again….yet God has some surprises along the way. Obviously we are not forcing anyone to follow this path. Most married priests refuse to do any work connected with the church. We do respect their decision. We are not here to judge anybody. We do pray for them and for their well being so they’ll live happily ever after.

Incredibly now we are meeting with the real people (most of the church goers, because of various reasons, do not represent the rest of the population). They speak to us honestly. We do not speak from high above (the pulpit [raised stand for preachers in a church]). We speak from our honest experience too. Now we realise that the church is alienated from the real world. We see that we need to help more people. In this phase we can help more because they see us as a normal couple who is facing normal challenges. Surprisingly, they find that the married priest is more available then the so called unmarried priest!!!

May God bless you all!

Finally…..we have a priest admitting of falling in love. So many female readers have asked for a priest to tell his point of view of falling in love. How does a priest feel, falling in love with a woman? Well today you should be so happy as one priest is prepared to spill all the beans about his love story with this wonderful woman. Enjoy your reading!

It is so heartbreaking reading all these messages from broken hearted women in these difficult circumstances. I am Patrick, a 43 yr old catholic priest.. I was ordained at 24 years of age so I am 19 years in the priesthood.

Naturally being human I have felt attracted to different women in my life. That is normal enough even for a celibate. But my difficulty arose 3 years ago when I met Michelle, a 32 yr old single woman at a parish meeting. She had difficulties in her life and we talked privately for a long time. After the meeting ended, I felt so at ease and at peace in her company and for both of us I think we realized that there was some bond or chemistry between us that night.

Anyway we kept in touch mainly by phone for a while and than we agreed to meet mainly to discuss her difficulties which have now been overcome. We enjoyed each others company so much that we kept in touch by phone and meetings even when there was nothing to discuss at a professional level. At this stage we had developed a good friendship which I had no difficulty with as it was within the boundaries of my celibacy commitment.

Unknown to myself this friendship was growing over time and I was blind to it or maybe subconsciously I knew it but needed her companionship and friendship. For her too, Michelle is her name the relationship meant a lot and in her own words transformed her life. She was a broken person when I met her first but now felt whole and complete in herself. This all began 3 years ago, but my difficulty is that in the last year or so the friendship grew into a fully intimate and sexual relationship.

The first time that happened I was taken unaware, one thing followed another and almost unknown to myself I was making love to her for the first time. I experienced the normal fulfilment and excitement that goes with that experience but also I was gripped with awful guilt with the realization that I had broken my celibacy vows. This is still a struggle for me.

During the last year the relationship has continued in full and has grown and developed in every aspect. I feel I have no control over my feelings or where this is leading me.

Obviously I am now at the stage where I have a dilemma on my hands. The relationship cannot continue as it is indefinitely with me in my current life. Do I walk away from Michelle once and for all or do I leave the priesthood and marry her make a new life with her?

Currently we have decided on a 3 month break to help me decide. Michelle has declared her love for me and asked me to leave on a few occasions. I finally promised her I would decide during this break of 3 months, two months of which have already passed. We still email and phone each other but will not meet until the time is up, around Christmas.

I miss her company so much and long to be with her. A sense of loneliness has grown in my life over the course of the relationship as I know now the sacrifice involved in celibacy. I have changed as a person as a result of my relationship, falling in love does change you in a good way. I certainly do not want Michelle to be hurt like many of the women on this blog. If I thought that would happen I would definitely leave the ministry, if you love someone you cannot allow them to be hurt.

Yes in all honesty I am drawn to leave, to life and family with Michelle. I have done 9 sessions of counselling with a lady psychologist and that process is also leading me towards a decision to leave. I admitted this to my therapist in my last session and it was such a relief. She is helping me to process that thought in the coming sessions to a stage where I can own and implement my decision.

What is preventing me? Well I am torn in conflict between the part of me that says I need to move on. I have outgrown celibate priesthood. I need a human relationship with a woman who is Michelle in my case. I love her and want to be with her and she feels the same. Than the other voice says you made commitments for life: you took vows, you owe it to God, the church, your parishioners and your family. This is my dilemma.

I feel I have known the answer for a long time, almost from when I met Michelle, my counselling is leading me to the same answer, but this other voice and guilt feelings still get on top of me at times. I need help to have the courage to do the right thing for me and Michelle over the next 1 month or so.

Readers….it’s your turn. Let’s help our priest is making the right decision. Now you can ask as many questions as you want to!