Catholic Church may soon be ordaining married men as priests.
In his interview with a German newspaper, Pope Francis has expressed his willingness to keep an open mind whether the Catholic Church is open to ordaining married men as priests. This is needed as many remote locations in the world suffer from a clergy shortage. The pontiff said that church will continue to keep its celibate standards applicable to most priests from all over the world. However, it could analyze the idea of married men possessing sufficient faith to be accepted into the priesthood.
In case the Catholic Church accepts such a plan, it will be a provisional extension of a Church which is already used to accommodate a number of married priests in exceptional cases. Pope Francis has insisted earlier the church could analyze the idea of “viri probati” or married men who have already proven to have faith can be ordained. In case the idea gets approval from the Catholic Church, there are doubts over whether it will be carried over to the U.S. Bishops may question the Pope on such a decision. According to Massimo Faggioli of Villanova University, all these are Pope Francis's vision of a decentralized church. He added the celibate church idea is cultural, institutional and financial compared to theology.
In other news, the Vatican said Pope Francis will visit Colombia in September. The purpose of this visit is to strengthen the peace accords signed by the Colombian Government with FARC rebel group. The Church hopes this will be a step forward to stop the violence which has been going on for more than 50 years now. The Vatican released a statement saying Pope Francis has accepted the invitation sent by the Colombian President and by the country's bishops. It further said the pontiff will make the trip from September 6 to September 11, 2017. The Pope will visit a number of Colombian cities like Bogota, Cartagena, Villavicencio, and Medellin.
Pope Francis says Catholic church may be forced to ordain married men
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A press conference was held in Colombia by the country's papal representative, Archbishop Ettore Balestrero, along with Bogota Cardinal Ruben Gomez. Juan Manuel Santos, the Colombian President, will accompany the Pope during his visit. According to Balestrero, the Pope is coming to meet all Colombians, whether they live in the cities or the villages, and those with cultures different than others.