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Re: Can East and West Coexist With Married Priests? [Re: StuartK] #342735 02/03/10 03:49 PM
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PeterPeter Offline
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Originally Posted by StuartK
As I said, there are more than 100 married Latin priests in the United States today, and I expect those numbers to increase as more Anglicans take advantage of the new ordinariates. Eastern Catholics can at least look at how their parishes manage, in addition to those of our Orthodox brethren.


http://www.pastoralprovision.org/History.html

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How might we assess the success of the Pastoral Provision after its 25 year History? The answer is quite well, according to a survey of Catholic Bishops and former Episcopal priests, done at the request of Cardinal Law two years ago. Does that mean that its work could not be improved? Two anecdotes may help to see some of the problems inherent in the “cultural difference” between the two situations. When asked the difference between being an Episcopalian priest and a Catholic priest, one former Episcopalian priest answered, “about twenty thousand dollars.” The financial arrangements for Catholic clergy are not suited to the needs of married men. This is a topic that needs further study and on which bishops sponsoring candidates need guidance.

Another difference brings additional challenges to the married priest in the Catholic Church, that is the size of the flock. The average parish in the Episcopal Church might have less than 200 families; in the Catholic Church parishes of over a thousand are common. Even though the married priest is prohibited from having the ordinary care of souls in a parochial setting nevertheless his work load as a Catholic priest will usually be much greater, whether as a hospital chaplain or campus minister. Indeed, helping in a parish on the weekend, as most of them do, can be very time intensive. This can, and has, led to serious repercussions on married life. The pastoral care of priests’ wives is a new topic for the Catholic diocesan bishop.

Re: Can East and West Coexist With Married Priests? [Re: PeterPeter] #342736 02/03/10 03:50 PM
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columba Offline
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I believe Jewish congregations tithe, in addition to periodic capital campaigns, and charities.
Columba

Re: Can East and West Coexist With Married Priests? [Re: columba] #342737 02/03/10 04:06 PM
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I think that many parishioners would be simply envious if they had noticed that the priest earns more than they are, and has no problem in supporting a large family. "Clergy is rich, and this is wrong" is the elementary marxist anti-Christian slogan used for years, even in counties with no significant presence of married clergy.

Last edited by PeterPeter; 02/03/10 04:10 PM.
Re: Can East and West Coexist With Married Priests? [Re: StuartK] #342738 02/03/10 04:23 PM
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Originally Posted by StuartK
Well, it's not really the Latin Church of which we are speaking, but the Greek Catholic Churches in North America, which were stripped of their patrimony by the constitution Ea Semper and thus never had a real chance to develop the institutional infrastructure to support married priests.

But, as the Holy See has called upon us to restore the fullness of our Tradition in all respects, we must also restore the married priesthood (and Byzantine monasticism, too), which means starting pretty much from scratch. As I said, there are more than 100 married Latin priests in the United States today, and I expect those numbers to increase as more Anglicans take advantage of the new ordinariates. Eastern Catholics can at least look at how their parishes manage, in addition to those of our Orthodox brethren.

The situation is not helped when some Greek Catholic bishops say out loud that they do not favor restoration of the married priesthood in their eparchies. It's one thing to have a "policy", but it counts for little if the policy is undermined by the attitudes of the people meant to implement it.


Given the passage of time since Ea Semper, I suspect that my observations would apply as well to the Pittsburgh Eparchy Churches in the United States. In my home town in upstate New York, the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church has been served by married clergy for the past twenty years or so. (Given the litigious history of the local Rusyn community, many of us found it ironic that they would live to see such a day - both among the Orthodox and Eastern Catholics!) The present pastor is a fine young man who is from the United States, went to Seminary in Lvov, his Pani is from Ukraine and they have three or four children. Perhaps some insight from our Ukrainian brethern here in the states or Canada would be helpful.

Re: Can East and West Coexist With Married Priests? [Re: DMD] #342739 02/03/10 04:28 PM
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I believe Jewish congregations tithe, in addition to periodic capital campaigns, and charities.

Actually, most synagogues charge membership dues, assessed annually based on the projected operating budget and the ability of each member to give. The membership issue comes home to roost on High Holy Days, when only members are guaranteed seating.

Charitable outreach is done independently of these dues. Only some orthodox Jewish synagogues tithe in the strict sense of the word.

Re: Can East and West Coexist With Married Priests? [Re: StuartK] #342740 02/03/10 04:29 PM
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Originally Posted by StuartK
Contribute in kind. Sweat equity is always welcome. Latin parishes could (and probably should) reduce their expenses by cutting back on the plethora of paid "ministries" on the payroll.


Amen to that. Our small parish (Byzentine)has one person on the payroll, our priest. We may give the accountant something I am not sure. We take in around 900 a week not much but the priest will tell you he is grateful for this amount. We don't have 100 families and we are a working class parish. Most all of our needs are met by those that have the skills and gove of their time.

The Latin Rite in our town has a priest, two secretaries, two CCD lay ministers, grounds keepers, 2 housekeepers, paid music ministry and a jack of all trades. They take in 7 to 8 thousand a week and complain they are always under budget. Money is the main topic at every Mass. They have 1000+ families mostly mid class and farmers not rich by any streach of the immigination. They could make payroll if they switched to fewer paid positions to allowing those that are willing and able to do the job as part of their contributions to God. Money is not the only way people are to give to God.

Re: Can East and West Coexist With Married Priests? [Re: StuartK] #342741 02/03/10 04:30 PM
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Actually, for some years now the Roman Catholic Church has allowed married priests ordained under the Anglican dispensation to serve as parish pastors. By all accounts, they are very well liked by their congregations.

Re: Can East and West Coexist With Married Priests? [Re: Kathleen Elsie] #342747 02/03/10 05:20 PM
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Unfortunately because of the size of most Roman parishes it is almost impossible to have the needs of the parish serviced by only the priest and some volunteers.

Many on here, always complain about how many paid Pastoral Ministers there are in the Western Church; if it was not for these paid positions I would be out of a job. I have more souls that I am responsible for in my areas of ministry than many Eastern Priests have in their entire parish.

I agree that more position should be volunteer positions in many Parishes, but it is also a fact that many of us that work for the Church essentially donate our time to the service of the Church.

For example, I am the Coordinator of Youth Ministry (and Young Adult Ministry) in a parish of slightly over 3,000 families. I am responsible for the Faith Formation program for those students in 7-10th grade that attend public schools, as well as the Confirmation program and all aspects of Youth Ministry, totaling roughly 400 teens. If you add in the Young Adults (ages 18-35) I have well over 1,000 souls in my care. I am responsible for fundraising, budgeting, volunteer development and many other aspects that most people dont' evenr realize. I am paid a yearly salary of $23,000 plus benefits, roughly coming out to about $9.50 - 10.00/hour for the amount of time that I put in. The diocesan guideline for the salary of my position is around $33,000/year. I have an undergraduate degree in Theology, plus Continuing Education courses and seminars as well as certifications in my areas of concentration. If I were employed in a secular business and responsible for overseeing 20 "staff members," fundraising, budgeting, staff development, the well-being of over 1,000 "pupils," I would be paid at least twice of what I make now.

Now that I have said all of this, if there were more clergy to fill these roles and/or we would have smaller parishes, I would be the first to resign my position, find secular employment and begin to volunteer more of my time to the Church.

Re: Can East and West Coexist With Married Priests? [Re: Erie Byz] #342751 02/03/10 05:35 PM
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All this goes to another one of my hobby horses: Latin parishes are just too big. Industrial scale Christianity does not work.

Re: Can East and West Coexist With Married Priests? [Re: StuartK] #342753 02/03/10 06:12 PM
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Originally Posted by StuartK
All this goes to another one of my hobby horses: Latin parishes are just too big. Industrial scale Christianity does not work.


I feel a great NEED to comment! Stuart and I have something to agree on!!!


Re: Can East and West Coexist With Married Priests? [Re: StuartK] #342755 02/03/10 06:20 PM
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I agree that the parishes are too big, unfortunately it seems as though we are at a point where there's not turning back.

Re: Can East and West Coexist With Married Priests? [Re: Job] #342756 02/03/10 06:26 PM
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Until the Latins have enough vocations to lower the priest to parishioner ratio, industrial scale Christianity will be the norm, I fear.

We Orthodox and Byzantine Catholics are blessed in this regard. We have parishes small enough that we only need one liturgy, where all the faithful can attend as a parish. latin parishes often have at least 3 masses per weekend, and saturday 4pm church-goers might not ever meet the sunday 8apm church-goers. Not really a sense of community, like we have.

Re: Can East and West Coexist With Married Priests? [Re: domilsean] #342759 02/03/10 07:37 PM
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It is a vicious cycle. Large parishes, multiple masses on Sunday, make it impossible for the parish to function as a spiritual family. It also makes it impossible for the pastor to know his flock, and places him under immense pressure. On the one hand, this leads to pastoral burnout; on the other, seeing what poor Father goes through, who would want to emulate his calling? How can the priest be an exemplar to men with the potential to become presbyters, if the conditions of his ministry make it impossible. So, fewer priests, larger parishes, fewer priests--until the implosion.

Many of the Latin parishes have at least two, and sometimes three priests. I would divide the parishes by the number of priests, and establish separate communities--whether as missions or full-blown parishes depends on the situation. Initially, they could camp in the same building, but eventually, one will move out and create a new community. The process should be repeated whenever the size of the community exceeds 1000 families--and ideally, no more than 500.

The ancient ideal was one parish, one altar, one Eucharist on one day. The proliferation of Masses in the Latin Church dilutes the ecclesial meaning of the Eucharist, and efforts should be made to restore it.

Interestingly, the Old Order Amish use a system much like the one I described. Since they meet in house churches, once a congregation gets too big for the meeting room, it splits, and a new congregation is formed.

The pastor of the new group is chosen by the ancient method of casting lots: three men are nominated, then each is given a Bible, one of which contains a slip of paper in an appropriate verse. The one who gets that Bible becomes the new leader. Interestingly, this is not greeted with joy, but rather with sadness by the man and his family, because the ministry is a heavy burden.

This very primitive approach appeals to me very much. It's at least as good as the system we use today.

Re: Can East and West Coexist With Married Priests? [Re: StuartK] #342761 02/03/10 08:21 PM
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the primitive approach works for a community that is based in those times. 1 parish, 1 priest, 1 liturgy is not a pastoral model that is going to work well in urban areas with large populations. while it may have worked well in a setting that had small towns and villages spread far apart in the middle ages, it isn't conducive to all situations today with a large shortage of priests, facilities, and larger populations.

It becomes a matter of, pastorally, what can be done considering external circumstances. If we wanted the ideal original model, we would still be celebrating the original pristine liturgies.

Re: Can East and West Coexist With Married Priests? [Re: Erie Byz] #342762 02/03/10 08:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Erie Byz
Now that I have said all of this, if there were more clergy to fill these roles and/or we would have smaller parishes, I would be the first to resign my position, find secular employment and begin to volunteer more of my time to the Church.

Lay ministry came of both necessity and was also a product of the Church's application of Vatican II. There is nothing inherently wrong with it, nor would I assert that it is functionally better to have a cleric in certain positions instead of a lay person.
While it is nice, it certainly isn't necessary in some areas.

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