Vatican considers ordaining older married men in remote parts of Amazon


EXCERPT: The Vatican has raised the idea of ordaining older married men as priests in the Amazon's remote areas where there is a shortage of clergy, in what could be a historic shift [...] This would be a dramatic change given that the First and Second Lateran Councils of 1123 and 1139 explicitly forbade priests from marrying - so we are almost past 1,000 years since the Catholic Church has maintained male celibate priests. Eliminating the prospect of marriage ensured that children or wives of priests did not make claims on property acquired throughout a priest's life, which thus could be retained by the Church. It took centuries for the practice of celibacy to become widespread, but it eventually became the norm in the Western Catholic Church.

[...] This is likely to raise the usual questions about whether Pope Francis is a reformer, battling to change the Church. Back in 2013, he spoke about gay people not being marginalised, but integrated into society. "If a person is gay and seeks God and has good will, who am I to judge?" he said. Some progressives felt this was the sign of a Pope willing to change the Church's doctrine - but in fact he subsequently reaffirmed the Roman Catholic Church's position that homosexual acts were sinful, though accepted that homosexual orientation was not. (MORE - details)

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