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No Celibacy For Married Anglican Priests Who Convert To Catholicism

The Vatican announced last month a plan to make it easier for disillusioned Anglicans, who feel their church has become too liberal, to convert to Catholicism. The plan allows for Anglican priests, including those who are married, to also convert to Catholicism. This stirred speculation that the age-old rule of celibacy for Catholic priests could be rescinded. Not so, says the Vatican. The married priests will join the Personal Ordinariates, the structure set up for ex-Anglicans. They won’t have to be celibate, but unmarried priests who convert to Catholicism and are ordained will have to adhere to the celibacy rule. Only celibate men will be admitted to the Roman Catholic priesthood, but the admission of married Anglican priests will be on a case-by-case basis decided on by the pope. Former Anglican bishops, including married ones, will be able to lead groups of former Anglicans within the Catholic Church, but the bishops will also have to be ordained within the Catholic priesthood. So, it seems the bishops will have to be celibate, even if they’re married, or choose not to be the ministers of their congregations. [Reuters] Keep reading »

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