Why can’t priests marry?

On his way back from the Holy Land last week, Pope Francis was asked by a journalist the same old question: why can’t priests marry? Believe me, even we brothers often hear those very same words. The answer of the Holy Father was very insightful, deep, and simple.

When I used to live in Thornwood, I would go every week to pick up donations at a bread factory. Once, one of the employees helping us asked, “Why do you want to become a priest, even if you know you will never get married?” I guess he was waiting to hear something about the rules of the Church and how tough they are. But I answered from the heart along the lines of what Pope Francis said: “Priestly celibacy is one of the greatest gifts from God to the Church, and we need to treasure it”.

As I move forward in my priestly formation, every year I am more and more grateful to God for this amazing gift of having shepherds that are completely dedicated to the service and care of the Church: The priest, like Christ himself, is actually married to the Church, and gives his life for her. They feed her with the Bread of Life; they heal the wounds of sin; they guide her along our spiritual journey to Heaven.

We need to pray and support our priests, that they might live their vocation to the fullest.



About Br Antônio Lemos LC

Br Antônio Lemos is from Curitiba, Brazil. He joined the Legion of Christ in 2006 after a couple of years as a Regnum Christi member. He is a big fan of the Brazilian national soccer team, 1980´s pop culture (specially movies), and St Thomas Aquinas. He is currently studying Theology in Rome.
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