Francesca Lily Hall
A prediction: What would happen to the Roman Catholic Church if priests were allowed to engage in sexual intercourse?
Word Count: 1,371
"Celibacy is not doctrine in the Catholic Church, it's a law. It can change”
Brazil homes the largest number of Catholics today; encompassing 140 million, however the ratio of Catholics to priests has risen drastically within the past decade. There are currently 7,100 priests to 1 Catholic. Efforts to import priests around the world has failed due to language and cultural differences. Since the rise of Pentecostal, which allow leaders to marry and offer more engaging roles to woman, there has been a twenty seven percent decrease within those who identify as Catholic. Therefore, if celibacy is optional within other Christian churches, surely it is about time Pope Francis considered the ordination of married men and non-celibate, but willing Priests within his community. This essay will explore a range of arguments that perpetually circulate celibacy:
Between January 1980 and February 2015, there has been 4,444 alleged incidents of child sexual abuse, with nearly two thousand being perpetrated by people holding a position within the catholic church. No longer than three months ago scandals across Pennsylvania unravelled- grand juries concluded 300 priests were found guilty of preying on one thousand children, within the last seventy years. Including former archbishops of Washington DC, Theodore McCarrick who resigned from the church after being accused of sexually abusing minors. These statistics are only increasing and coverups are proving unsucessful in the face of the New Media Age. It has been thought that celibacy produces sexual frustration and those outlets then develop into paedophilia or other deviant sexual acts. Jason Berry, the author of ‘Lead Us Not Into Temptation: Catholic Priests and the Sexual Abuse of Children’ states that celibacy acts as an invisible cloak around purity, allowing deviant priests to hide their sexual dysfunction. It is harder to detect sexual misconduct among those who portray to live celibate lifestyles- for this reason priesthood draws in paedophilia.
Other arguments include the unnatural aspect to abstinence: Martin Luther King, the father of the Protestant reformation warned us that celibacy leads to masturbation, “We are all driven to the secret of sin. To say it crudely but honestly, if it doesn’t go into a woman, it goes into the shirt” (Triple J Hack, 2017). In 1862 Darwin explored the sexual reproduction of man and woman. On earth today 99% of multicellular creature reproduce sexually, therefore if we are not asexual beings, why refrain from our organic and innate selves?
Eugene Kennedy, who was a former priest, left his clergy title twenty-five years ago to get married. To join the Catholic church, it is mandatory to understand one’s own sexual identity and many priests are recruited before they have sexually developed or emotionally matured....