A lot has been made recently of Archbishop Parolin’s comments about the church’s discipline of celibacy. Take a look at what Fr. Dan Beeman had to say about it.
The Secretary of State for the Vatican actually did say something that is true. But it’s being misunderstood.
He said: Priestly celibacy (that a priest makes a promise not to marry and thus to remain a chaste celibate) is a discipline required by the Church in most of the world. It is not adogma, which would be a formal theological truth handed down by the Church which is unchanging.
The fact that priestly celibacy is not a dogma but a discipline, the Secretary of State says, means that it could be discussed. Like the principal wondered if we might want a nicer cafeteria.
The Secretary of State didn’t say that it should be discussed. He didn’t say he thought that the discipline should be changed, or that it is changing. He simply said it could be discussed. In the entire course of a 36 minute interview, he talked about it in only three sentences.
Fr. Dan gives the three basic reasons for celibacy – go read the article and see what they are. My favorite line is:
When you see a priest, you see a man who says, “the promise of heaven is enough for me” and invites us to remember that this world is passing but life with God is eternal.”