Thursday, August 12, 2010

Priest calls for end to mandatory celibacy

In a new self-published book titled I Want to be a Husband and Father For Life and a Catholic Priest Forever (XLibris, 2010), Fr. Eugene Weitzel, CSV argues that "the law of celibacy is a serious violation a priest’s basic rights. Most men and women, not only need to love God, but also to love a person of the opposite sex at the conjugal level. It is natural, it is healthy, it is most rewarding, and it is right. The Church did not enact and require the vow of celibacy to help priests grow spiritually, but for all of the wrong reasons. Elliminate it NOW."

Fr. Weitzel, a semi-retired Viatoran priest who is based in Illinois, has an S.T.D. in Moral Theology from Catholic University, has taught school and worked as both a hospital chaplain and a regular parish pastor since being ordained in 1959 says that he has never been unhappy as a priest but, he argues, “most priests...will be at their best when they encounter all of the joys and sadness, hurts and disappointments of married life. Marriage for them will be an enriching challenge. It is the best way for them to grow as a person, to achieve, to self-actualize, to become, to deepen their faith, and to draw closer to God.”

Fr. Weitzel is also the author of Pastoral Ministry in a Time of Change (Bruce Publishing Co., 1966), Contemporary Pastoral Counseling (Bruce Publishing Co., 1969). According to his author biography on XLibris, he has published two sacramentaries for visually handicapped priests and edited and contributed to three books on liturgy and moral theology.

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