So we're at it again with the modernists.
Tear down anything that even has a pinch of Catholicity for the sake of connecting better with the culture and with the times.
The one thing that always pops up that is a discipline and therefore can be changed is the commitment to priestly celibacy. In todays hyper sexualized world we are constantly told that people cannot control their sexual desires and priests should not be expected to do so either. We are also told that the celibate lifestyle is the true cause of the sex abuse trial. Furthermore it is stated that if we just loosed the discipline we would not have the priestly shortage that will plague the church now and going on into the future.
I cannot tell you how much the celibate life is so despised by people in today’s world. It’s like today’s world is still staring at Christ up on the cross and telling him to come down. This attitude is not limited to celibacy it also relates as to how Catholics view the sacred liturgy.
As a side note I want to quick hit the attitude toward the liturgy by even orthodox Catholics. During the pontificate of Benedict XVI, the Holy Father attempted to restore some of the traditions of liturgy which developed organically over the last 2000 of sacred history. He was often maligned by the “progressives” and even at points he was condemned by the orthodox faithful for being pompous in bringing back the beautiful aspects often referred to as the trapping of his office. Things like the fanon, the walking cross, historical vestments and miters were shunned by many as monarchial and not focused on the people enough, that they can’t connect with that life style. Now enter Pope Francis who is a simple Jesuit. Referred to as humble for not wanting all the supposed “trappings” of the office like the mozetta, the papal apartments, the golden pectoral cross and the liturgical laws of the church. Immediately Francis can do no wrong in his thoughts and actions and whatever he does it must be defended as De Fide. Many of us who are often referred to as rad-trads or even accept and use the term were also out and critical of certain aspects of Benedict’s papacy, including Assisi III and his less than enthusiastic use of the Tridentine Mass. So now that we challenge this supposed notion of humility that people have tagged as relating to his simplicity. Yet many of us so called trads don’t accept this connection on its face like the happy clappy orthodox crowd do. His choice in celebrating the Sacred Liturgy towards the people to begin his pontificate was somewhat concerning because Benedict had made it a point to offer the sacrifice Ad Orientem in the Sistine Chapel. Now my view on this is that he is more comfortable doing it one way and since that first couple days his probably a confusing and often threatening time a little comfort for his Holiness should be afforded. There is an old Jesuit joke that as long as no one is hurt during a Jesuit liturgy things went well! It is a funny joke but quite frankly just a modern thing to pass up the lack of reverence and commitment to proper offering of the liturgy which was no problem for Jesuits prior to the 1800’s at the very least. Simplicity doesn’t mean that we are able to identify with a person any better than if an action was complex. Living in a Vatican suite is no more humble than living in the papal apartments, sure it might be less square feet but the apartments don’t drop into Earth they are still there and still will need to be maintained. I personally don’t care where he lives or whether he wears a silver pectoral cross but too many people are back handing Benedict by pretending that his love for the sacred aspects of the office can’t be reconciled with the poor of the church. Its like during the whole Benedictine papacy all he did was mock the poor, treating them as dirt. But anyone with half a brain knows this to be utter bafoonery. Even some prelates which don’t deserve their names
Now back to celibacy. First the argument that celibacy leads to pedophile predators is on its face false in the nicest matter and straight libel and calumny in its sternest understanding. Not partaking in the marital embrace is no reason to then go out and rape a child. You cant even say that they are exploding on the inside and therefore are only acting out because they are suppressed because there are many faithful Catholics (a majority by far) who are single and chaste, and don’t molest children. The John Jay report which was done to find the causes of the sex abuse crisis showed to those without an agenda that the crisis is a result of homosexuals who found their way into the clerical state and used their position of authority to perpetrate their hideous deeds. This homosexual culture that has penetrated the Church has been documented by many sources including the book “Good Bye, Good Men” which I highly recommend, and even the recent report by a Polish Priest who did a study on behalf of concerned prelates. It must be pointed out that this is the primary cause of the abuse crisis and not whether someone is celibate.
Second no one forces anyone to become a priest and therefore accept the discipline, so to say that they are forced into this unnatural situation is a sham on its face. No one is guaranteed the priesthood, and when a person chooses to enter into the state they do so knowing the rules of the life. So to make the point that they are trapped in this unnatural state leading to them acting out on their sexuality is a faulty notion. Can you imagine trying to justify a married man whose wife is abstaining from the marital embrace, goes out and commits adultery then they come back and say well its her fault I couldn't help myself. There is a certain thing called self-control that should be expected of all people. I, being chaste, am often tempted by the culture to get all of my desires fulfilled at the time they pop up. Yet somehow I am able to control my desires by his grace. No its not easy to be faithful, but those that wish to follow him, firstly the clergy, are called to take up the cross and follow him. We forego the things of the world. We sacrifice and die to self-daily in our pursuit of his will. And one of those things that priests are asked to sacrifice is the possibility of marriage which is primarily for the purpose of children and mutual bonding. It should be no surprise that people in modernity object to celibacy because as its constantly stated the thing they most think about is the marital embrace. Yet God wants more for us. That’s not to say that the marriage is bad, for it is a great thing but it has a purpose just as the priesthood has a purpose, and in the west we generally prefer that distinctions are made and that a priest is not tied to a family (unless otherwise allowed) for reasons that are I think reasonable. Modern man does not understand this, they think their life is about pleasure and the more the better, and if you are not getting any you just aren’t living so it must be changed.
Finally saying that loosening the celibacy requirement will somehow stop the shortage is a joke. Just look at the other Christian faiths and they don’t have the requirement, yet they are in even dire straits then we can imagine. Ask yourself will loosing this requirement really make Catholics in modernity really think about becoming priests? I mean think about the lifestyle that’s expected of a priest, always on call, little compensation, treated like dogs by the media, shamed for teaching what is Catholic, and completely dedicated first and foremost to God. How many of us can even begin to accept this as what we are called to. Paul tells us why being celibate is helpful and quite frankly it makes sense.
If we are really interested in solving the problems that face us we need to ask what is at the core of the priest shortage and the call for priestly celibacy to be removed? It is fundamentally a crisis of faith, people don’t know the faith and quite frankly even if they are sacramentalized they don’t care. Catholics contracept and abort their children out of existence destroying generations of future Catholics including clergy not only prompting a shortage of prelates but destroying the Catholic family and even the catholic education system has come under great pressure because there are so few kids and the modernists have used their positions of influence to secularize the schools.
So for those of you that think that we must rid the church of her beautiful traditions and therefore are shouting at Christ on the Cross telling him to come down from it, to be more in line with what they want I say to you, You opinion on the matter is foolish and is nothing more than surface fodder for modern man who lacks the ability to reason to truth in the first place.
So cheers to you and all my best,