Tag Archive: malta


The hidden challenges ahead

In the Catholic church we have witnessed centuries of blind obedience. We were practically trained in order to follow rules. We were always presented with a long list of what to do and what not to do. Everything was very clear….there was the truth, and there was the lie. If one tried to go against the tide, one would have sunk immediately. There was the middle age image that if one goes against the rule of the church, one would be penniless because people would make a boycott against all his professional activity.

How could one change all this? This is the beauty of the Catholic Church. When there is no hope, something new is born. A frail, sick and very old pope was elected. Everybody was commenting that the church was in a very bad position. He was practically elected to govern for a few more years until the two main parties found a consensus on a real pope! The dying pope was a pope in transition! He was Pope Saint John XXIII.

Well, the dying pope called for an ecumenical council (1962-65). As he lived in other countries where the Catholic religion was a minority, he met many good people. It started his own spiritual adventure: how could a good person, alas not baptised, not go to heaven? In a few words he started to put odd questions. He started to question the status quo of the Catholic Church.

These few paragraphs are very brief in explaining to most of our readers the culture of the Catholic Church. Practically most of our readers were born after the Second Vatican Council. I’m assuming that most of them did not receive a proper education where they were invited to come up with questions!! It’s like the old class where students where invited to listen and to jot down notes!

Nowadays even if one enters a classroom, one has to encounter students who have to ask many questions…one can’t simply bring the ready-made material for the class and to expect them simply to jot down the notes….the mentality has changed. Now, can adults do the same? Can we prepare a new spiritual ‘army’ with questions outside the box?

This is what the married priesthood entails. I’ve just met a religion teacher who was profoundly effected by the fact that one of the lecturers in the theology department was married…and he was a priest too! It’s a very old mentality where priesthood and marriage are not compatible. As if Jesus in one sacrament was against Jesus in the other sacrament!!!!!

For this reason, it shows that we can’t let others speak for us! We have to take the initiative to explain things to people. Many people still don’t know that Anglican priests are coming over with their wives whilst Catholic priests cannot marry!!! We can’t take anything for granted. We need to meet many more people. Many people following Catholic Media still don’t know about the Pope’s intention for Brasil!

We can’t wait for the pie to fall from the sky. We have to take action. We have to show the people how many priestless parishes there are going to be. We have to explain that a church without the Eucharistic celebration is nothing. The Catholic church can’t survive without celebrating the Eucharist at least once a week. On the other hand, a parish is simply not a sacrament station where one goes to fill up once a week. There has to be a community building. A community building needs some responsible people to be in the parish all the time. It’s not just going to celebrate a mass on a Sunday, and then going away soon after. Who is going to look for the lost sheep? Who is going to explain a lot of things of our faith? Who is going to comfort and give his shoulders to many people who feel all alone? There are many more duties which could make the Catholic Church come out alive but how could all this happen if there is no one to take on all these duties?

We need married priests, because they are prone to stay for a long time in a parish. They give a stable view of the parish, besides, they are already involved with the school system, teens parties etc….Their own children have to meet and mix with the rest of the parish! It’s a good way to keep the parish priest up-to-date with the parish current situation.

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The Father professor and his student

I’m Adele. When I was twenty, I met Fr. Karol. He was my professor first, and our friendship, relationship, whatever you want to call it, took place over about nine months. We got to know each other slowly because his class was a lecture, so he didn’t have much interaction with students. But I made a point of bringing him food, and asking him how he was doing because while he was all passion and jubilance in public, he’d make off comments in class which suggested he was lonely—he was a foreigner in a new country, after all.

My kindness to him, asking him if he had somewhere to go for Thanksgiving, inviting him to my family’s dinners, asking how he was doing, as well as my performance as a student made him interested in me. Two things really changed our relationship from just student-teacher to friendship, however. First, I told him I wanted to study theology, specifically, the same area he specialized in. So, I asked if he would mentor me. He said absolutely he would. He was pleased someone was actually interested in his area of study.

Second, I went on a retreat where he was one of the priests who heard confessions. There were only two priests to choose from, and I knew them both, so I chose him. It was an intense confession because of what I had to confess had to do with trauma I had been through in my life. Hearing my confession was difficult for him because he was getting to know me because we had already made somewhat of a connection. I think it was then I knew he cared about me in some capacity, so I began to confide in him more and more. After a few months of spending more time with him, we developed a bond.

Well, maybe there is a third reason. Toward the end of the first semester, he asked me, with tears in his eyes, “Why are you so kind to me?” I told him, I honestly didn’t know, but probably because he was a good professor. Then, he told me that he was very glad I asked him over for Thanksgiving, because even though he had already been invited by another professor, for the first two years, no one invited him, meaning this is the first year he wasn’t alone for that holiday. Most significantly, he told me he was very lonely the first two years living in the US. When he told me this, I felt obligated to be attentive to him in the future, and it reminded me of my own father, who I always tried to make feel less lonely.

I was not interested in him romantically. What I wanted was a father figure. He was about twenty years older than me, and I was hurting because my father had recently left my mother and younger brother. Maybe he wanted was companionship, or maybe, a relationship, and perhaps he didn’t know what he wanted. But what he did want—he told me all this—was for me to read his books, talk about his scholarship with him, go out to eat with him, and he even mentioned visiting me when I went off to grad school, and he hoped to go on vacation with me at some point, (which I know, he made it sound all very romantic without intending to, I think, but I focused on the fact that he was a priest). He was looking to the future, a future in which I’d be a student he could be proud of.

We did go out to eat together sometimes. When we did, I got the distinct feeling that what he wanted from me, I couldn’t give him. I was naïve, so I had no idea how to interpret this feeling. In retrospect, I think I knew he was looking at me in a romantic way, but I didn’t know how to take it.

When I talked about my father, he’d get very upset, as in, he’d literally start tearing up. I’m not sure he knew how to handle my sadness, so he’d try to cheer me up by telling me that I was beautiful, that I was brilliant, that God loved me very much.

Later in our friendship, he revealed why it was so hard for him to hear about it: his own mother sent him away to boarding school because he was too high-energy, but she kept the other children at home with her. He felt utterly abandoned too. At one point, when I was crying with him, about my father, he told me would “never abandon me,” that’d he’d “always be in my life, no matter what.”

Every time we were together, there was a tension that I couldn’t name, and it felt uncomfortable for both of us. Except he’d always act like whatever time I spent with him was a priority. I’d ask him if it was okay for me to visit him in his office. Sometimes he’d be in a foul mood, but he always said “why wouldn’t it be okay for you to be here?” I think he was exhausted from pretending to be happy all the time, and with me, he felt more like he could be himself. I was one of the few people in his day to ask how he was doing, and I actually wanted to know.

There wasn’t just one thing that showed me that he cared. There were just many small things, like the way he was attentive and kind and sometimes teasing; the way he confided in me; the way he showed me he was so much more interested in me than other students. There were some big things too: When a cardinal from another city came to visit for a talk, there were a group of his students wanting to meet the cardinal. In front of a big group of his students, he chose to introduce me to the cardinal, completely ignoring all of his other students—they might as well have been invisible, since he didn’t even refer to their presence. I was so embarrassed because they all looked annoyed and disappointed to be ignored. I was just a sophomore, and he passed up students he had known longer than me to introduce me. He also would tell me he was meditating on me, trying to figure me out.

He came to know me, extremely well. He knew who my friends were and what was important to me. When I went on a different retreat my mom asked him to write a letter for me of support, as often people do on retreats. It was beautiful, and I could tell he put a lot of time in it, and he addressed me, “Dearest Pearl.” More important to me, however, is that he showed up for the part of the retreat in which family and friends come out to show you how much they care about you. Honestly, only he and my mom showed up, which amazed me. I went up to hug him and thanked him for showing up. Later, a woman there who I met on the retreat told me “it was so nice for your boyfriend to show up.” And it bothered me that a stranger thought we were together.

I have bipolar disorder, and because of all the sleep I missed with the retreat keeping us up late, and all the homework I had to catch up on that coming weekend, by Wednesday that week I was manic. (Sleep deprivation in people with bipolar disorder causes otherwise stable people to become manic.)

Because of the boyfriend comment, I became paranoid that people were spreading rumors about us being a couple. But quite honestly, his showing up confused me. Even though my mom invited him, she later said she invited just about everyone, and of course, he could have not shown up, saying that he was too busy or just politely declined. His being at the retreat suggested to me, at the time, that he wanted to be in my life more deeply, and I didn’t know how I felt about it.

Later that week, I went to his office to talk to him about it. Mid-conversation, the tears flowed so copiously, I had to lean forward to see him clearly. With what words I had left during mania, which makes people hyper-religion and grandiose, I asked him “are we like St Teresa and John of the cross?” He didn’t have an answer. It was my way of asking “this is strange and convoluted and intense but chaste friendship, right”? And he not understanding made me cry harder, so I kept apologizing because I knew I had asked something which couldn’t be undone, I wanted he and I to be good and holy, but I couldn’t say the words. My mind was too on fire to speak, to reason, and my eyes were too covered in tears to see, that I had to leave him there in his office, just to stop crying. As a 20 year old, I didn’t have the boundaries or the language to ask what his intentions were, or what he wanted from me. So it all came out wrong, I admit that. However, there was something obviously wrong with me, but of course, unless you have experience with people who are bipolar or are in the mental health field, you’re not going to know what is going on.

By the end of the week, I was in the hospital because I couldn’t sleep and it was causing me to be delirious. While I was in the hospital, he called my mom, telling her I was in love with him and that I couldn’t speak to him anymore. He said that if I did, he’d report me to the administration. When I got out of the hospital and my mother told me this, my first reaction was anger. I hated that he would assume that I wanted anything from him other than for him to be a priest. It hurt me to know he thought so ill of me, like I was a stupid romantic girl. It seemed so out of the blue for him to make that accusation. To this day, I have no idea what it was. I think he may have been afraid of the attention I drew to him by showing up and leaving his office crying. I think by then he knew that other students and professors were aware that I was a “favorite” student, and I think he might have been afraid of the worst possible perception.

Every time I saw him after that he looked, so, so, so, miserable, and when I saw him in class his eyes were bloodshot and glistening, the way they would be on the several occasions he had gotten upset in front of me. It was the end of the semester before the summer, so I didn’t have to see him very much at all, only a few times, but I knew it would be too hard to have to see him again, to be treated like a pariah after he promised to never abandon me, that I left the university. I considered him an important father figure in my life, so it devastated me to be rejected by ANOTHER father figure.

What I wish more than anything that he was honest with himself and with me what he wanted all along. I was only twenty, and I have no idea how he thought I’d figure this all out on my own without guidance. It would have been kinder too if he told me the truth, and spoke directly to me why we couldn’t see each other anymore, instead of going to my mom, of all people. In retrospect, however, I think the whole friendship was kind of inappropriate. Once he heard my confession and began to “counsel” me about my father, he put himself in a pastoral role. That pastoral role has certain responsibilities to not become overly involved, as it creates confusion for both parties. It’s why therapists don’t hang out with their patients. With all he knew about me, all he had promised to me, he had a so much power over me. It was an abuse of power for him to treat me the way he did. I found him a comforting presence, so I turned to him for help, and he offered himself as the answer to my problems. He should have known better.

We invite all our readers to give their thoughts, prayers and words of encouragement to our Adele. Please remember that anybody can fall in love at any moment in his/her life. It has nothing to do with one’s mental health or way of life. We are humans. We can’t survive without love. Now if it is born in the so called ‘wrong place’, what can we do? Removing our love feelings towards somebody is not like erasing a mistake on paper. It goes much deeper than that. Love is our universal language!

The role of patience

The young ones are famous for bringing about a lot of changes in a very short time. This happens in a school, business company, local council, politics and in any other sphere where human beings interact. We all know the result. Most probably most people reject change and may turn the table onto the younger ones. ‘Too soon’ and ‘too drastic’ are some of the famous sayings heard in everyday life.

Patience is not something which could be taught like in a school. It has be mastered slowly and by inner reflection. The person has to continue struggling to bring about changes, yet it has to pick up the right wave in order to bring about small changes. In other words: “Patience is power. Patience is not an absence of action; rather it is “timing”; it waits on the right time to act, for the right principles and in the right way.” Fulton J. Sheen

We all look for results. We all want positive changes. Yet, most of the people are happy as they are. This is like the saying: everybody wants to go to heaven, but nobody wants to die!!

How do we achieve our dreams of married priesthood? Well there are no magical formulas. There are no instant results. We have to study how to bring about the best result. But we all need to work hard for it!

Well the Pope, true to his word, made an invitation to Brazil. It’s the country with one of the lowest percentage of priests in comparison with the faithful there. He is very shrewd. Refusing in such a big country (some call it a continent with its big dimensions), would be equal to a suicide. But the Pope started from the country which cannot refuse such a call if it wants to survive and still have Catholics in its own land. The hemorrhage is incredible in such big country. People are leaving the church in large numbers. This is the effect of not having at least a mass once a week.

Now it all depends on our response to such change. Are we going to apply pressure to the Vatican, to the local church? Are we ready to start discussing with the rest of the church? Our big guns are several but we wish to focus on two of them: one is the lack of priests where many parishes are struggling just to offer a mass per week! The other one is the common point with most non-church goers: sexuality. Most people have left because in the Catholic Church we can’t update our sexuality chapter anymore. It has to be re-written from scratch. The married priests are in a comfortable position to tell what’s most important and what could be discarded having children of their own.

We have noticed as well that some Catholic agencies didn’t publish the news that the Pope has invited Brazilian bishops to discuss priesthood for some married people (referring to male ones). This already speaks volumes. Not all the people will agree. But this should not discourage us. Living in a democratic country we should not get discouraged because of different opinions. Yet the good of the church tells us to do something before it’s too late. This should be the base on which to discuss the issue. It’s life or death situation.

Watching a TV program discussing ghosts, dead people, afterlife etc….shows how little do the people know of what the church truly teaches!! There is a lot of confusion, everybody coming out with a new version of what happens after death…….we need more priests, we need more catechists to tell them what the church teaches!

My name is Audrey. My priest’s name is Joe. I’ve had a massive crush on one of the younger priests at my parish for several years now (for the record, I’m 26 and he’s 31). A while back, I asked him to be my spiritual director, and since then, he’s answered many of my questions and concerns and helped me discern several personal issues I’ve been struggling with. On the surface, our relationship overall has been reasonably normal. However, I’m “secretly” absolutely head over heels for him, and it’s not solely because he’s a priest as I’ve never crushed on any other clergy (I work for the parish, so I know/have known/have interacted with many.) In fact, he’s the only person I’ve truly been attracted to in over 7 years.

Earlier this week, he and I were teasing each other, apart from a major difficulty I’ve been facing recently (my desire for power/control, facilitated by lust – which is directed at him [but i didn’t mention that bit]), and it led down some…rather spicy rabbit holes. I was caught off guard when he asked for details (again, I didn’t mention him in those details at that point), and he seemed intrigued by what I told him about various kinky fantasies I have, such as feeling an immensely pleasurable rush at the thought of choking someone [him]..although in retrospect he was probably searching for the reasons for the lust so we could work on resolving them. Needless to say, I answered with gusto, but, as you can imagine, my problem has gotten considerably worse because the conversation wildly prodded my lust-buttons. No joke at all. I had to restrain myself from leaping up and kissing (!) him there and then. Notwithstanding, I kept my cucumber coolness as well as I could, and our session ended with prayers as usual.

Armed with plenty of new, nasty thoughts, and eager to continue our discussion, I asked to see him a few days later. When we sat down in his house again, I was completely giddy, and my heart was pounding as I fidgeted nervously on the couch. I began by saying that I wanted to clarify some of the things we’d talked about the last time. I looked him dead in the eye and told him those crazy thoughts were all about him, and that I love him.

To my surprise, he wasn’t taken aback. He said he had known already. Friends, I’m not subtle, and I’m a flirt machine when I see somethin’ I like. Nonetheless, I fully expected him to tell me to leave and that we could never meet again – but, he said it was ok for me to stay as long as I promised to work on resolving my over-arching problems with control. He also candidly admitted that it’s “happened before” (?) and that, of course, he can never marry…which was amusing because I only said that I loved him, not that I wanted to marry him. But alas. we ended with prayers, and I audaciously asked for “a hug…just a small one?” he complied with palpable reluctance. It was so worth it.

That last session left me feeling enormously conflicted. I had initially assumed that, in my head, we had “broken up” and I’d to move on…but instead, it’s intensified my desire for him another hundredfold, fuelled by his continued offer to help me find peace (his own words.) I’ve seen him since then – at Mass a few times and reconciliation – and he doesn’t seem annoyed, disturbed or otherwise affronted by me. However, I feel that our dynamic has changed: we catch eyes more than we did before my affection-confession, but that’s probably just me being extra weird.

As with the rest of you ladies (and gents), I know this has been and continues to be an exercise in futility, and I would honestly be mortified to strip the Church of one of her priests (and an exceptional one at that), and yet, the selfish lasciviousness blazes on, and I can only look forward to the next time we have an uncomfortably awkward interaction.

I wish to thank our contributor for this week. Thanks to some people who are not afraid of sharing, we can move on in our spiritual journey. To you dear readers to discuss (peacefully) our last romantic story on this blog. Happy Reading!

Rev Father has a baby!

Hello! This is Aj from the Philippines which has a large number of Roman Catholics. I’ve been looking for this site because I want to share my feelings and story too. I need some advice so I can move on and know what to do. I’m a Director in my company and a nurse by profession so currently I’m a health advocate and sharing true health to all people. One day a friend of mine referred me to a Major Seminarian School, so maybe I could offer them my products. At first I was very shy because it was my first time to go there, meeting seminarians and Priests. But it was all good.

Then one Day they invited me to visit again the seminary school for there was a birthday party, probably a luncheon together with the seminarians and all priests who resided in that school. On that day we were about to start the birthday party when a Guy about 5’7 in height came out from the office downstairs and with a smile, of course I smiled back. In my mind ” Hmm He’s cute and Handsome” All I knew he was just one of the ordinary people destined to meet that day but to my surprise, He was the Birthday Boy and what hurt me was he was a Priest. Well, nothing is special, I just let the idea go by the wind. So, I greeted him with a Happy B’day Father!

I ate lunch with the seminarians and all the residence priest together. And I just left the place for almost a year… then it was one month of Sept.2016 when I went back to that place to sell our products because it was already my deadline to pay bills and credit cards so I went there. This B’day Boy, ” The Priest” that I once met was there again. I asked him to buy my products…. he he that was so embarrassing coz I’m selling it by force! And He offered me to lend me his money. I promised to return it back in due time. I ate my pride and took it! He was leaving for 2 weeks for his retreat in Baguio so we’ll see each other after that. We texted and having video call after his activity and before he was going back to bed till he came back after the retreat and planned to see each other. Finally he returned back after 2 weeks. To give thanks and for welcoming him again and secretly send him a bunch of flowers and balloons in the seminary school as a form of thank you and post b’day gift. He was really surprised that day because that was his first time to receive such a gift like that. And he knew it came from me. Ha ha it was my first time to do that too. Ah well I’m in a long distance relationship for 3 years now to my Fililippino bf who’s in America, had never had the chance to see each other personally just in skype, fb and social media.

To cut it short, I’m single for almost 8 years after my first boyfriend and next was this LDR for 3 years. So, for me that “killing factor in tagalog” or goosebumps and attraction every time I saw this Priest is really breathtaking for I used to be alone every time. Back to that roses I gave him, He thanked me a lot and he even cried for he never received one ever since” Well, you’re a Priest that’s why! He he.. We agreed that “to fall in love with each other is a BIG NO NO! For us because we are just friends and it’s a wrongful act If it ever does happen then we need to move away from each other. The communication continues… then one day he invited me to attend his mass in cabugao, so i decided to go. He invites me to eat at the parish in order for me to introduce my products to the other priests but i refused. I told him that I’ll just meet him outside. After his dinner he gave me a lift at 711 and decided to stay together to have some catch ups! I was really nervous and excited that time because the feeling was really good and it was so overwhelming. We don’t know what happened next till we just discovered that we are already in a certain place, private place, private room, to be exact like normal couple and Yes! We kissed, We hugged and We made Love. We stayed together till morning! Things happened so fast. I couldn’t explain my feelings. We bid goodbye after that 1st time that we made love. The communication continues… and it gets deeper and deeper especially from the moment when he said “I LOVE YOU”, and of course just to be honest to myself I said “I LOVE YOU Too”.

After the first time we continued seeing each other every Sunday or anytime as long as we wanted to meet. The feelings gets deeper and deeper like normal couples who used to made love and share happy moments together. For almost one year of having together we had a Baby Julian and he thanked me a lot for giving him the opportunity to give him a child. We love each other so much that one time he told me to leave his ministry for us, his family. I told him to decide well because it will be a BIG decision. He cried every time he’ll see our picture with our baby. He wanted to be with us normally but just can’t.

A few months from now he’ll be leaving to Australia, he promised me that he’ll be with us very soon. My mom knew already that he’s the Father of my Baby and accepted it. Now we don’t know what to do. He’s 6 years in service to God. He pursued his Priesthood because he bargained to God that if his mom survived the brain tumour then He would serve him forever…but now, I was already on the scene and our Baby. Do you have any advice about us? Please help, we love each other so much.

I remind everybody that comments which judge or try to bully this woman will simply not be tolerated. But besides that. This case has a new revelation. The priest now is a biological father of a baby. This changes everything. He has the legal and moral duty to take care of his own baby. Now excuse can be used in order not to take care of the baby. He can’t simply hide and go away. Let’s continue following this case. Let’s all be one in our online community by helping Aj to have a proper care for her baby.

A Spanish love story

My name is Cris and I’m from Spain. I will refer to “my” priest as Father A. I have been thinking about sharing my story for a while but, at times it was too painful to keep thinking about it and feeling alienated because falling in love with a priest is not something common, at times, I’ve felt alone and even ridiculous. However, I’m glad there is a safe space where I can share my story with people who’s been there. I’m not going to get into details because there are too many but I will try my best to be as accurate as possible. Thank you in advance for listening.

I met the priest on February last year. I was a college student and I had to take extra credits and through a friend I took a class on Theology, which I love. There I met him. I was 27 and he was 36. I really liked him on the spot because he was very charismatic, goofy, awkward, smart and he seemed a genuinely kind person. I don’t think he paid much attention to me those days. However, in April we met by chance at a college event and we started talking. Everything was fine and normal. Then summer came and we both parted ways. Next semester I went back to college and I texted him because I really wanted to be friends with him and we met. Nice but very formally.

He later told me that we could go someday to have coffee or something and I immediately agreed. For me it was normal having a coffee with a friend. He happened to be a priest and had a right to have friends like any other human being. At the coffee shop we talked about life and stuff and when we were to part ways when he gave me a present: a book he had previously lent me. I admit that I was shocked and glad. I did not know what to think about it. I thought “well he is a priest, he is just being generous because he sees I’m a little alone.” Inside I was falling hard for him. Later that month I had to admit of having loving feelings and I thought to myself: this is shitty, but if there is a possibility of him liking me, I have to try. So months later (yes, I was a very insecure person back then), I asked him for coffee and he said yes. So we finally met and we talked normally and I thought, for how the conversation was going, that he was trying to push me back. I was sad but ok, but before we parted ways we went for a small walk around campus (it was dark) and when we were alone he took my hand and interlocked his fingers with mine. I was, again, shocked and I did not know what to do but i felt so happy that I just went with the flow. We kept talking but we did not talk about what that meant or about feelings. We parted normally, but i was still in hock and, because of all my insecurities, I did not know what to think because he also did not text me or anything.

Since that moment what we call here hot and cold treatment started between us. At points I thought I was over analysing things but one day I was brave enough and, after a day full of flirting, asked what we were doing. At first he denied it and said that it was me that flirted too much but then he had to admit it was also him. He said that yes, that he was attracted to me but he was not going to leave anything, that was his life. I understood but what hurt me the most was that for a long time he tried to justify all his actions, saying things like he was just a man, that he was having a tough time in his life, etc. We finally kissed, he told me to please leave him, that he did not want to fail his vows. He even told me that when we are in Heaven he would look for me to be together. I do not know if he was serious or if he just told me that just to leave him.

I felt that by justifying himself I had only been a scapegoat, that I meant nothing special to him and that I was ridiculed for having falling in love with him. To this day (and after many more things that happened that I’m not going to tell because it will take too long) I still have a hard time believing that he may have been in love with me, but not enough to try to go into real discernment. I do know if he actually had a crisis in his ministry because of us, but it was not important enough to do a real and serious discernment and just give us a try. Deep down I do understand that it’s his life and vocation, but after so many failed relationships I really wanted to feel loved and cared by a man who is kind and gentle and who likes me back…we have not seen each other in three months and we rarely talk.

Last time we talked he told me he had very good memories of us and that I was not the only one who pursued the relationship. I felt a little bit better but still it is not enough for us being together.
I’m sorry for my English. I do not know what else to say.

I say that Cris described her relationship really well. Now the practical part: how can we help her? First and foremost let’s keep her in our prayers. Secondly, can we share our experience in order to help understand better how a woman-priest relationship goes?

I’m Annie and my priest’s name is Jack. I’ve been reading your blog for sometime now and I wanted to finally share some of my story (it’s okay to post this). It’s not very detailed but it’s enough. I met a priest in 2013 just before my husband left on a business trip. This trip was to last 5 months abroad. My husband is very kind, and I would say we have a good marriage. This priest was from an other parish filling in for our priest.

After my husband departed for his business trip, I filled my days with daily mass and volunteer work. In those days I would see this priest. There was an instant chemistry that I was very aware of. He was too. There was much eye contact, both catching and looking away and catching again. I felt that his homilies always spoke to me personally. I felt the hot and cold too at first. It would go from one week he’d “see” me and then the following week completely ignoring me. In those moments of being ignored I felt crushed. We didn’t speak much. I would email him occasionally asking for a Mass intention or pray for someone or something but nothing beyond that. 

Eventually, my husband returned home. The hot and cold and eye catching didn’t cease with the priest but seemed to increase. The day came when this priest was to return to his home parish. It was in our goodbye that set everything in motion. He expressed not wanting to leave and saying he wished we’d had more time together. We emailed in earnest after that day. Our correspondences was filled with double meanings…it was frustrating. I met with a few weeks later. It was at this time he expressed his love for me. I was so shocked and pleased all rolled into one.

Over the next several months we would meet and our closeness grew both emotionally and physically. Until he broke his promise of celibacy and I broke my marital vows. We continued this way for a year. We’d meet at different places, it would always end in us being intimate. At first i thought what we experienced in friendship and love was special, unique and true. But as time progressed the illusion of us being “meant to be” as he put it came crashing down.

I felt many times he wanted to know all about me but would share only bits and pieces about himself. He wanted to know and meet my friends and family but I was never to meet his. I would want to plan ahead, he would give me excuses for why he couldn’t. Then he would make palms with other friends and family. Yes, we’d text and call but my communication with him didn’t take priority. There would be days I wouldn’t hear from him. I would take time to ensure he knew I was thinking of him constantly, at the expense of spending that time and effort on my family. He would just say he was too busy or too tired….or just couldn’t. He would be jealous and it would cause arguments between us. He always wanted to advise me on my life and would get upset when I chose not to follow his guidance. It was like he wanted an observer rather than a participant in his life. He never seemed to understand actions speak louder than words. 

When I realized that the relationship would always be one of secrecy, one built on falsities, one that would never progress beyond a rendezvous, I couldn’t continue. I told him I just wanted to be friends. He wanted us to continue as we were…confiding in each other, communication, still seeing each other…everything but the physical contact. I couldn’t agree to that. It would be tempting to just fall back into what we were. So I cut everything off cold turkey. He hasn’t contacted me at all since I said no more to all of it. I sometimes get the urge to text him because it’s hard to stop all contact with someone after a year of constant communication but then I remember that he wasn’t mature enough to tell me goodbye. At first I was upset he didn’t contact me back, but now I am grateful. It has allowed me to make a clean break from him. 

Why do I want to share all this? Because after reading all the posts from women hoping against hope their priest will be different, I had to speak up. Aren’t we more than the little bit of time and attention they give us? Don’t we want more for ourselves? Someone who will fully commit to us? Their time, attention and love? Where when you meet or talk there isn’t an elephant in the room looming over head because of who and what he is? 

I’m mad at myself for listening to the flowery things he said. For not paying attention to his actions towards me. I feel I wasted the last couple of years on him to feel immense guilt and sadness. I remain married to my husband. I am constantly working to better myself and my marriage. 

It’s up to the readers to comment in order to make our blog very lively. Last week we had a record of 273 comments! Thanks to all who participated and made our blog truly unique. Every opinion counts! On the other hand we had some interesting news…The Pope is giving back authority to the local bishops to fix the liturgical translations. He is giving back authority to the local bishops. Remember that we need to pester our local bishops about married priests! Please do your part. Don’t lose faith. Let’s keep going. Don’t be afraid if they don’t answer or they seem to be very cold or indifferent. If we wish to testify about our Lord Jesus Christ, we need adults who are strong enough to withstand any coldness or bitterness! Some positive news (thanks to Maria from Italy)..the Hungarian bishops are asking for married priests!!! In the USA there is a local community who is asking for married priests!!!! Let’s unite and move forward…the future is not very far away!

Another hot and cold priest

I’m Wendy. My priest’s name is Craig. Forgive the long story, but I don’t know how to understand my priest. His behaviour is odd, and it’s ripping me up inside.

Let me start by saying that this has been a horrible year for me! In the same month, I had a tumour on my neck, my mother went into kidney failure, and my 67 year old boss was constantly harassing me, and threatening to fire me, so she could afford to keep her 35 year old boyfriend in the company. He just got out of rehab, and hasn’t been employed a year. He went to rehab after working at my company just one week, when he showed up at work drunk. My boss sent him to rehab for three months, then brought him back to the company, where he took my promised promotion. We were in a deficit, and could not afford him, so now all of a sudden, she was finding all kinds of flaws in my work, while he is paid literally just to sit around, and be her boyfriend. On July 4th, she finally got rid of me. My point of all this, is that this year has been misery, and my priest was like a light at the end of a very dark tunnel.

He came to my parish as a parochial vicar in 2014. To be honest, I did not like him. I had a private meeting with him to ask a question about a dilemma I was facing. He was rude, and sarcastic. I thanked him for his time, and left.

After that, he’d say hi to me in church. I’d nod politely. I’m the shy type, so I’m not good with eye contact. In 2015, my mother was hospitalised in ICU. (We live together, because of her many health problems. She rarely goes to church.) Father came to visit her. It was their first time meeting. She told him that I went to his church. When she said my name, he said, “Oh yes. She’s the pretty dark-haired girl who sits in the front row.”

After that, he approached me CONSTANTLY in church. He’d ask me how my mother was. When it was time to give the sign of peace, he’d step off the altar, and shake my hand. During the procession when mass was ending, he’d stop, and ask me how she was. He even knelt beside me during Adoration, and asked. That shocked me, because Adoration is done in silence. He started calling the house a lot, and coming over to the house. He wanted to give my mother Communion. I remember thinking that I misjudged him. He was a nice guy after all.

This behaviour continued until summer of 2016, when I came to church 10 minutes late. He gave me a dirty look, and kept his eyes closed during most of the service. When it came time to give the sign of peace, he never came over, like he usually did. Was he really that mad about me being late for church? The next week, I was on time. He was still cold. He would be all laughter, and smiles towards everyone else, then his face would change when he saw me. He looked at me like he hated me, or would just close his eyes. This went on for a month. Mom told me that it was my imagination. That following Sunday, there were two priests. The pastoral vicar proceeded out the front door, I left out the side door, like I always do. To my surprise, there was Father holding the door open as the parishioners exited. There were just three parishioners in front of me, and no one was behind me. I saw him smile, and shake the parishioners hands. He would joke with them, and ask them questions. This for me, was the moment of truth. How he reacted when I walked out that door, would tell me whether or not I was imagining things. Sure enough, the second he saw me, his face changed. He looked straight ahead as if he didn’t see me. I said goodbye to him, and he didn’t even acknowledge me. Just looked straight ahead.

Months went by, and my church attendance dwindled. It wasn’t really because of him. Things regrettably, got in the way. And yes, my faith was (and still is) on the decline. Last November, a gland that was swollen on my neck since the summer, got bigger, and was throbbing. It turned out to be a tumour. During that period, to my shock there was a knock at the door, and it was Father. I hadn’t seen him in months. Unfortunately, Mom and I were both sick, and improperly dressed so we did not answer the door. It surprised me though.

This January, besides my tumour, my mother went into kidney failure, and my boss started harassing me. I went to another church in town because they were having confession that day. I wanted to return to God. To my surprise, I heard Father’s voice in the confessional. It turns out that during the period when I was missing church, the older priests either retired, or transferred, so Father became the parochial vicar of 5 parishes! During confession, he was so compassionate, and understanding. He visited my mother when she was in the ICU. I decided to ask him for an anointing on my tumour. When I came to the rectory, he was very caring. The only thing I thought was odd was that he was ogling my legs. His eyes went from my feet to my legs, to my thighs, and once there, they widened, and remained transfixed. I was wearing ordinary pants. In fact, I don’t even think that I have nice legs, so that surprised me.

When he saw me in church that following Saturday, it was like old times. He was friendly, and went out of his way to say hi to me. Ten days after the anointing, I called him to tell him that a miracle happened. Out of nowhere, water started pouring out of my neck, and the tumour went down to the size of a mosquito bite. He didn’t call back. A few days later, on Ash Wednesday, I went to church. Before the service began, he came out to talk to me. I showed him the tumour, and he was surprised. He shook my hand, and went to start the service. Because I had just come home from work, I ate on the drive to the church, so I did not receive Communion. When the service ended, I lagged behind, and knelt in prayer.

After the miracle occurred, my faith reignited, so I stared at the Tabernacle, gave thanks, and asked God to heal my mother, and to help me at my job. Father then approached me from behind, and asked me if I had wanted Communion. I explained to him why I didn’t take it. He told me that an hour had gone by, and it was okay for me to take it. He went to the sacristy behind the altar, and gave me some. It was at that moment that I started to get feelings for him. I thought about him constantly, but I didn’t act on it. He’s 14 years older than I am, but he seemed to be the perfect man. That weekend I was out of town, so I didn’t go to Mass. Monday, when I went to work, my boss brought me into her office, and ordered me to go into therapy, or she would fire me. Her boyfriend said that I was creating a hostile work environment by interrupting his recording sessions by tapping on my watch (I don’t even wear a watch.), and by asking if I could go in there. I told her that I’d hardly call that hostile, and it was in fact him who was doing that to me, and I showed her the email proving it. It was from another coworker telling him not to interrupt me during recording sessions. My boss remained unmoved, and forced me to go into therapy. I was furious! During Lent, the church had Adoration. After work, I went straight to Church, and I cried to the Eucharist. All of a sudden, Father came in. He gave me the warmest smile. Suddenly my pain seemed bearable. That following Tuesday, the church also had evening Mass during Lent. I went. When Mass ended, Father left behind the altar. I stayed, and knelt down begging God to help me with my problems. There was the parochial vicar, and some other people still in church. Suddenly from behind the altar, Father comes out, and says, “Has it been an hour yet?” It was only a 30 minute Mass, and I ate on the car ride over, so I told him no. He laughed. I was sitting in the front pew, and there was a barrier in front of it. He knelt against it, and said that he would give me a blessing, instead. He touched my head. He asked me how my tumor was. He also said that he wanted to see it. I moved my hair from my neck, and showed him. He also asked me when I’d know the results of my MRI. I answered him.

His voice then took on a more seductive tone. He was whispering. “It was wonderful seeing you the other night in Adoration. It’s a great place to meditate, and receive peace.” He started looking at my hands which were folded in prayer. He stared into my eyes, and smiled. He had a dreamy expression on his face. We kept staring at each other smiling. This may seem weird, but it felt like an electrical current had passed from him into me. I had a feeling something was about to happen; like he was going to kiss me, or something. It scared me, so I rapidly turned my head away from him. Still dreamy-eyed, he whispered, “Bless you!” He told me that he had to go. He gave me the most seductive smile,waved goodbye, and went back behind the altar. I went home in a daze. I knew at that moment, that it wasn’t just my imagination, or wishful thinking. Father wanted me. I told Mom about it when I got home. She warned me to be careful.

That Friday, when I went to work, the boss gave me another written warning threatening to fire me, if I did not stop “creating a hostile work environment”. I had been recording notes into my cellphone, and her boyfriend said that it was making him uncomfortable, because he didn’t know why I was doing it. It was notes about recording the news, sports, and weather. She said that if she had to write me up one more time, I’d be fired.

That Sunday evening, I called a coworker while he was at work, to ask him a question. He answered, then told me, “Crazy stuff is going on here at work. There are men sitting downstairs with guns. They said that the boss told them to come. They’ve been here the past three nights!” I worked on an Indian Reservation, and they have their own government agencies, and some of them do carry guns.

This was too much! I hadn’t told the priest about my problems at work, but I called him up, and left a voice mail, asking if I could use the church after hours to just sit, and pray. I told him about what was going on at work. The doors lock automatically, so locking up wouldn’t be an issue. There was no return call, so I decided to pray in the Church parking lot. I just wanted to be as close as I could to the Eucharist. Well, when I got to the parking lot, I saw that the Church was all lit up, and there were cars, everywhere. I felt that God had answered my prayers. Thinking it was a Mass, I rushed inside, and took a seat. It turned out to be a confirmation class. I was embarrassed, but I just continued to kneel, and pray. When class was over, and he greeted everyone as they left the church, I heard him ask the parochial vicar if everyone in the church was gone.

I took that as a sign that he didn’t want me there, so I started to leave, when he stopped me. I told him what was going on at work. To my horror, he was rude, and condescending. He told me I could stay after if I wanted, but I was so embarrassed, I just left. After that, he was mean to me. He’d look at me, and roll his eyes. He’d get angry if I stayed after Mass to pray. He even yelled at me. I would just ignore him, and continue praying. Lots of people come to church when it’s empty to pray. Why did he care so much what I did? He could just sit in the rectory, and ignore me.

So Father wouldn’t feel uncomfortable around me, I asked a male coworker to come to church with me. Maybe then Father would feel relief, and stop being so awkward around me. Of course, my coworker saw this as an opportunity to take advantage of the situation. He kept touching me, hugging me, and putting his arm around me. I politely asked him to stop. To my surprise, Father was jealous! He said the Mass with tears in his eyes. He actually sat on the altar, and buried his head in his hands. He was stumbling, and losing his place while he read. When Mass ended, he nodded to my coworker, then hung his head as he left the church. He did not greet anyone. I felt terrible.
He treated me worse after that. Finally, on Good Friday, when the church was empty, I told Father that I wanted the other Priest to perform a blessing on me for the results on my tumor were not as optimistic as I had hoped. They were inconclusive (still are), but the doctor didn’t like the looks of my MRI. He told me that the other priest was at the rectory. I hesitated, then said, “I’d ask you to do it, but you hate me.”

He gave me a look of shock, then said, “I don’t hate you. Why do you think that?”
I then proceeded to tell him everything. He denied doing it. He then changed the subject by saying, “This is the most eye contact I ever made with you! Usually when I talk to you, you look at the floor. I didn’t want to make you uncomfortable.” Still looking him in the eye, I shook my head to tell him no. He smiled, and said, “This is nice.” He then gave me a blessing, and I left. I thought everything was good, but the eye rolls continued. A few months ago, one of his employees asked me to volunteer at the church. I told her that I get on Father’s nerves, so I’d rather not. Well, I didn’t know that he’d come walking by right after I said that. She pulled him aside. They both looked at me, and started talking. They talked for quite a while. He then gave me the dirtiest look, and left. It was the other priest’s turn to do Mass that day.

A week later, as I was leaving Mass, he pulled me aside, and told me how it bothered him that I thought he didn’t like me. He said that he felt no ill-will towards me, he liked having me there, and he was sorry. I just stood there, and listened. I was going to argue with him. He then put his hand out for me. I thought he wanted to shake it, but he just held it for a good 30 seconds. He let go, and started to walk away. I stopped him, and told him that on Monday, my mother was going to be tested to see if she qualified to get a kidney transplant, and I wanted to donate one to her. He offered to come over and anoint her. He came over for the first time in a while, and anointed her, and yes, he ogled my legs again. And no I was not dressed seductively.

After coming home from the days of numerous tests which we still don’t have an answer for, I went back to work to discover that I was fired. I didn’t bother to tell my priest. I still don’t know how to take him. In church, he’ll say hi, but part of me wonders if it’s just to save face, because his employee talked to him about what I said about getting on his nerves. He still closes his eyes when he sees me in church. He treats no one else this way, because I look. Everyone thinks he’s nice, warm, and charismatic. I used to think so, too. I’m uncomfortable going to church now. Yesterday, was a holy day, and I almost didn’t go to Mass out of fear of what the priest would think. I then realized that I was putting the priest before God, so I went to church in spite of him. He saw me, rolled his eyes, then kept them closed for the rest of the service. It’s hurtful. He’s the pastor of five churches, so I can’t really get away from him. I believe that love is the most Christian act of all, and if mandatory celibacy is causing you to neglect, and even be mean to your female parishioners, and make them feel too uncomfortable to even go to Mass, then it’s not creating a holy service to God. I fell in love with him, but never acted on it. Never even told him about it. I rarely even look at him. I just leave church every week with a hole in my heart.

Readers: Wendy is asking for guidance. She’s asking other woman what they did in such situation. Please give your feedback as it might help a lot. Thanks.

The Surprises of the Holy Spirit

It’s summer, it’s hot. Our spiritual lives most of the time reflect our hot season. This summer has been too hot. We feel dryness on our inside too, in our spiritual lives. We would like to see the apostolic church to take over our church. In our Western Culture we are used to see changes, if not we do change our government. We are used to voting on a paper, if not, we do vote with our feet.

In the church and in our spiritual lives things tend to be different. The changes sometimes are too subtle to notice. Most of the time they take ages to see. Besides that, for many years it seems that nothing has been happening at all! We tend to lose faith. We tend to find comfort in other matters as we resign ourselves to the status quo in the church. We are a little bit impatient!

The life of prayer tends to make us familiar with how God sees things. It changes us to God’s image. In the real prayer we let God melt us to a unique image. God is not in a hurry. He gives enough time to all. This time could be our learning curve. We take time to realise who is a good friend to us. We take time to understand how God works in our lives. We take time to grow in our relationships. We take time to see how our children are growing and changing.

These days, sort of an insignificant event took place. In a parish, a nun was authorised to conduct a wedding. It was a glimpse of how things could change. The pope himself knows that the age of the priests is already a time bomb. If most of them are of a certain age, then a future pope won’t have the luxury to mull over a decision. He has to take action immediately if he wants the survival of the faith communities!

Reading some comments of our readers, it seems that some of them have given up all hope that the Catholic Church will ever change! We wish to bolster the faith of all. Yes the Catholic Church changes according to God’s wishes. But we are confident that married priests will be included some time in the future. The church will become more beautiful with married priests although there will always be unmarried priests. The church is a community where different people, with different attitudes can live side by side, next to each other in a peaceful way.

Let’s hope that our blog besides showing the face of the future church, will also inspire many christians not to wait but to start the change themselves by supporting married priests. Let’s hope that the faith of our readers will increase and not decrease when faced with centuries of still, malodorous water!

The wife of the Pastor

We spoke a lot about the priest who is side by side next to his woman but what about his wife? What does she think about all this? What does it mean for her to pick up a man of God as her husband?

Today we’re addressing ourselves to a small percentage of women who encourage their husband-priest to continue his work as a pastor to the flock. Why does a woman would go for all this trouble after being judged and labelled by other Christians?

We wish to emphasize that no priest, who left active priesthood, is being forced to continue working as a priest. We always believe in the free will. Nobody could force you to do anything in life. Otherwise it would be counterproductive. Besides, if we criticise the church for being forceful with celibacy, we don’t want to be pharisaic by forcing any priest to do something against his will!!

Most of the women realise that a priest cannot cancel his past (and present one too) ! Most of the priests who leave the parish are not immature. Most of them are sincere and honest. In fact this is one of the reasons they had left: they can’t live double lives. They chose sincerity. Now most of them were used to be very social and help other people. Priesthood was not a 5 to 8 job for them. It was his vocation. He is that way: kind, helpful, understanding, caring and sociable.

As the woman gives him all the attention, love, understanding and one million other useful things…she comes to realise that her man is richer. He can’t live without giving a part of his life not only to his family but also to other people. Now in some cases, the woman becomes extremely jealous of his time spent elsewhere…..but in these cases, the personality, charisma or talents of her husband, like a plant in the hot and dry summer months, will slowly but surely die. Would she like a husband who becomes an introvert without talking or communicating anything? No she doesn’t. So as time passes by, she realises that the best cure for her husband is to become his old self by serving the people of God.

Now obviously, most Catholic priests, either have to convert to any other religion which allow married priests, or else start their own parish with all it’s pros and cons. It would be quite difficult at the beginning but it’s quite rewarding in the long run.

On the other hand, one cannot dismiss one big stumbling block: being involved in the building of a community, does it mean that she is going to have less time with her husband? There are several ways to face this challenge. Here are some of them: a very good way is to share the work of her husband. In fact the advantage of having married priesthood is that there is an extra pair of eyes to help her husband (unlike the unmarried priest). In this way, when he is ‘at work’, she would be next to him most of the time. Another solution would be to teach people to respect the working schedule of the parish unless there are emergencies. Some people tend to be egoistic expecting service 24/7 even for simple things such as filling up of some papers!!!

One solution would be to delegate some of the work to others such as a council or panel. The involvement means that the parish is owned by all and not by the pastor’s family! This has the advantage that if they own it, the parishioners might work hard for its maintenance.

A method which I found quite interesting is to have the family day where the pastor is away for a day or for some hours, depending on the situation. This ensures that there is enough time and care for the pastor’s family.

Finally being the wife of the pastor and having a family (including shrilling kids!!!), might not mean of having a perfect family (where is the perfect family?). So the wife needs to combat the idea of having a perfect family. It’s a normal family with all its ups and downs. They would be facing the same challenges other families are facing!! This is not a disadvantage but rather a big advantage because they can speak from experience. People would listen more to their family experience.

If you’re interested in this area, we are referring to a book written by the wife of a pastor! Here is the link! Let’s receive the feedback of many of our readers! Please we would like to read your responses as this is what keeps this blog alive!