Friday, September 13, 2013




SAY IT AIN’T SO, ARCHBISHOP (the top photo is of Pope Francis)

Pope FrancisThe Archbishop (bottom photo) didn’t deny the possibility – something truly remarkable in itself. Here is an extract from the story from The Thom Hartmann Program that prompted the above headline.

Archbishop Pietro Parolin, seen by most as the second most powerful man in the Vatican behind the Pope, opened the door yesterday in a newspaper interview to the possibility of priests getting married.

He said, “Celibacy is not an institution but look, it is also true that you can discuss (it) because, as you say this is not a dogma, a dogma of the church.”

In other words, priests being single and celibate is not a dogma – an absolute, unbreakable, God-given rule – but, rather, simply a policy of the Catholic Church.

And policies can be changed.

The Catholic Church allowing priests to marry could be a huge step toward a number of positive worldwide revolutions.

Science tells us that the single most significant difference between a country where population is running out of control, versus one where population is stable, is the empowerment of women.

We also know that societies where women have significant political power are less likely to engage in warfare or to have huge imbalances in wealth between the top and the bottom; and more likely to have strong social safety nets, a better quality of life, and less illiteracy and poverty.

It would not be an exaggeration to say that the empowerment of girls and women, through education and political power, is the single most important thing that can be done to save the world.

Do I believe all that? I was brought up a Catholic by monks (pretty good people overall) though am not particularly religious these days. Nonetheless, I think the world would be a better place if priests and nuns were allowed to get married—and divorced. As we all now know, the repression of sexuality can have unfortunate consequences.

I find it hard to imagine married monks (though I knew one who demonstrably fell in love with our house matron). On the other hand, I find it hard to imagine our rigorous sweaty, all male, games oriented, boarding school as co-ed—and now it is.

To be fair, we weren’t sweaty all the time—we had great showers—but only after rugger or military training—or when thinking of the opposite sex.

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