Sunday, August 4, 2019

Arguing Whether or not Clerical Celibacy Should be Maintained :: Argumentative Persuasive Essays

Arguing Whether or not Clerical Celibacy Should be Maintained "Like his two older brothers, Mark Vincent Serrano became an altar boy at St. Joseph's Church in Mendham, New Jersey. Invited to visit the parish priest in the rectory, he became--from the time he was 9 to the time he was 16-- a victim of serial molestation: groping, sodomy, oral sex, and forced masturbation," (Press). One New Jersey priest convicted of molestation, said that "his vow of celibacy made no mention of abstaining from sex,"(Saharko). In order to determine the value of celibacy in the Roman Catholic Church, the exact meaning of celibacy must be understood. Celibacy, as defined by 21st Century Webster's Family Encyclopedia, is "voluntary abstinence from marriage and sexual intercourse." The state of celibacy is exalted above that of marriage in the Church based upon 1 Corinthians 7:32-35, which states, " He that is unmarried careth for the things that belong to the Lord, how he may please the Lord: But he that is married careth for the things that are of the world, how he may please his wife. . . . And this I speak. . . that ye may attend upon the Lord without distraction." That's a wonderful ideal, but 1 Corinthians 7:9 says, "But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn ( with passion)." While it's true that if men don't want to abstain from sex they could just stay out of the priesthood, the number of priests has declined so much that it probably would be better to just allow the priesthood to marry. "[B]y requiring celibacy as a conditon of ordination. . . the Church forces itself to select from a much too limited pool,"(Press). By revoking the policy of mandatory celibacy,and thereby opening clerical positions to married men, the church could possibly dramatically increase the declining priesthod numbers. It's not just the lack of a sex life that drives men from the priesthood; some just can't handle the extreme loneliness. Rather that suffer alone they just leave, so that they can have worldly things: a wife, children, a family all their own. Dan Rodricks, a columnist for the Baltimore Sun states in his column, "...Leaving the priesthood quote." Advocates of celibacy worry that if priests marry, the congregation will be majorly neglected. However, that point is easily refuted because of the available examples of the leaders of uncelibate churches.

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