EDITORâ€”Many times non-Catholics have written articles showing their concern about celibacy in the Catholic Church. I have failed to understand the purpose. Is it done in good faith or is it meant to bring disunity in the Catholic Church?
Religion is like a club where you have members. It has a constitution which guides them in the methods of work with a common purpose. Members sign in and pledge to uphold the constitution. Other people are free to join (freedom of association). Catholics who want to join priesthood are taken through a long training â€“ in fact, longer than any profession. The candidates fully understand the implications of celibacy.
It is a choice of way of life. Some anti-celibacy agitators say that Catholic priests break this vow of celibacy because it it is impossible to keep.
It is true some priests have broken their celibacy promise, like we hear of sex scandals by Catholic priests.
But it is also true that other clergymen are the same even if they are married. Even the so- called married people cheat on their partners! Just read the daily papers and you get it all.
So what is the problem? Is it priesthood? It is the discipline of individuals towards sex.
Secondly, I have observed that there is more financial mismanagement in those churches with married clergy than in the Catholic Church. Other clergy have to problems of maintaining families (upkeep, school fees, etc.
It is expensive for Christians to maintain married clergy. Because of these difficulties the clergy do not concentrate on pastoral work, especially if members of the family are sick or do not have basic requirements in life, etc.I have been prompted to write this letter in response to Assumpta Dheyengeraâ€™s entitled â€œFor more than 1,000 years Catholic priests were not celibateâ€ .
Dr. Josue Okoth
Religion is like a club with a constitution