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Eastern prelate: Latin Rite should consider married priests

Catholic World News - November 08, 2010

A Melkite Greek Catholic prelate says that the Latin Rite should learn from the experience of Eastern Catholic Churches and consider ordaining married men to the priesthood.

“We always propose this to the Latin church because you are Catholic and we are Catholic, but we always feel a lot of reticence when we mention this issue to the Roman Catholic Church,” said Archbishop Georges Bacaouni of Tyr, Lebanon. “I don’t know, but I think it could be helpful to allow a married person to be a priest.”

His rite’s tradition, he added, is “to choose someone who has his own work in the particular village, a good man, a faithful man, a Christian man. He will study a little bit, some theology and philosophy, and he will be ordained.”

In its Decree on the Ministry and Life of Priests, the Second Vatican Council voiced respect for the Eastern tradition of ordaining married men to the priesthood and strongly praised clerical celibacy.

Born in 1962, Archbishop Bacaouni was ordained a priest in 1995 and appointed archbishop in 2005.

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