Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The Minnesota Blizzard Makes His Way to Modern Italy

Recalling that it was for only 30 silver shekels that Judas betrayed the Lord 

Romanian Catholic priests who were legitimately married before their valid ordinations may not serve their own faithful in Italy, according to a leaked document from the Italian Catholic Episcopal Conference:
Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco
Archbishop of Genoa, Italy
and president of the
Italian Episcopal Conference
(The Romanian Catholic Church follows the Byzantine liturgical rite and retains many customs — such as a married priesthood — similar to Eastern Orthodoxy, from which it broke away in 1698 when it entered union with Rome. It is estimated there are more than half a million Romanian Catholics in Italy.) 
The letter from the Bishops’ Conference cited the importance of “protecting ecclesiastical celibacy” and the need to “prevent confusion among the faithful.” At issue is the concept that the free exercise of the right of Eastern Catholic Churches to ordain married priests is limited to their “canonical territory” or traditional homelands. Outside of their traditional territories, this right is seen as subject to regulation by the Pope.  
Click here to see the the full article on the website of St. Elias the Prophet Ukrainian Greek-Catholic Church of Brampton, Ontario, Canada.

Wednesday's Wages are a series of posts which highlight past and present struggles faced by Eastern and Oriental Catholics including the topics of bioethics and persecution. Do you know of a homily, lecture, interview or biography which you think should be featured here? Leave a comment to let me know.

4 comments:

  1. I saw this a few days ago- one must remember that this happened about 100 years ago in the US- what happened? The OCA was formed and thousands became Orthodox. This Pope has been called the Pope of Unity- but only for Anglicans coming into the Church (?) very sad.....

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  2. Yes, it is amazing to compare the two. It is also humbling to be reminded that the Church is large and varied and as much influence as the pope holds, he is not a dictator who can force even the Italian bishops around him to all be on the same page. So much happening simultaneously and contradictorily with ecumenism bearing fruit while the same principles are not applied to those already in the Church. We still have much work to do.

    I was told at one time that the Romanians have had so many clergy in their own country that they can't support that they've been sending them out to other countries, and Italy was one that was specifically mentioned. This was a conversation from years ago, but if the person who told me this was correct, and if I'm remembering it correctly, I wonder if that could be an influencing factor in the Italian bishops' decision now.

    Most fascinating to me is the application of Cum Data Fuerit. I've heard some in the US go so far as to say that it is not only outdated but actually now not in force because of later events they believed overrode this decree. Those who've been arguing that it is in force and that the North Americans and Australians who are ordaining married clergy are doing so in defiance of it seem to have some heavyweights siding with them now. I'd like to know if there are any countries with a dispensation from the decree.

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  3. I posted this comment on Facebook, but I thought I would leave it here as well.

    "Given that this issue caused thousands to break communion with the Bishop of Rome in the past, it makes me question the judgment of bishops that do not remember (let alone learn from) history!

    This is all very sad, and I wouldn't be surprised if it leads to a new wave of Catholics returning to the bosom of Holy Orthodoxy. After all, Anglican priests, who enter full communion with the Catholic Church, are allowed to remain married in the Roman Rite, but Catholic priests, who are legitimately ordained, may not minister to their own faithful in foreign lands because they are married. This makes no sense.

    May God have mercy on us all!"

    (Obviously, this gets my blood boiling, so please forgive me if I have offended anyone. May God have mercy on me, and please pray for me.)

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  4. This is so unfortunate. I read on a forum earlier today that this happened twice before in Italy concerning the Ukrainian Church.

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