Celibacy for religious leaders is antiquated. Catholics priests have been dwindling in numbers for years and the lifting of this restriction would attract more initiates. Most other denominations have already moved in this direction with great success.
Is it worse to close churches that present the light of Christ in so many venues (sacraments, Mass, mission work, etc.) than to abolish the vow to celibacy? I don't know.... But I think I would vote to do whatever it takes to ensure this never happens in our world or our lifetime.
The male and female is created with a purpose. The union of male female contributes to the natural perfection. Celibacy contradicts the purpose of male and female existence and the purpose of creation itself. Since humans have free will to chose the voluntary celibacy may be justified, but never the mandatory celibacy.
Priests/nuns relationship with God is fundamentally different than one with a partner. Having a significant other (wife,husband) should complement a life whether it is one working in the church as I clergy or in a lay capacity. The estimated high percentages of those unable to stay celbate to rip indicate it is not working as a policy. Certainly individuals can Ichoose celibacy.
Priests were allowed to marry for 1,000 years, and the Catholic church got rid of it because of land issues. That's it. It does not say anywhere in the Bible that they must remain celibate. I think it should be a choice. Some will still choose to remain celibate, but they shouldn't have to. They can certainly devote themselves to their wife and the church at the same time. Doctors, for example, are very busy people. They must put their patients before themselves. Yet, they still marry and have kids.
Plus, God Himself made women because "man should not be alone."
If a priest is prohibited from experiencing an important aspect of the American life, how can he lead his people? Majority of Americans have been married at least once in their lifetime (something like over 70%). My dad's uncle was murdered for molesting and his son is currently being unsuspected today. I truly believe this would not be the case if my family members were able to marry and led a healthy lifestyle.
In biblical standings God says man should not be alone. Taking a wife would not create a barrier of your ministry but what does create a barrier is burning with passion. Sure Paul says its better to be single because you can focus on God's work but God uses many men who are married to do great things. Our Lord and Savior born through a woman in a marriage, Moses married, Abraham married, and many others and God used them.
Jesus said, when His disciples concluded it is "better not to marry" due the strictness of His marriage law, "not everyone can receive this saying" (celibacy). It would be nice were they able to isolate the few who can handle it, but too many cannot handle it as evidenced by the rampant pedophilia in the church. Historically, celibacy was introduced to protect the assets of the church (land and buildings were deeded in the priests name which his widow would sell to survive). The pretext that this made priests "more spiritual" should be admitted and they should find another way to protect their assets.
There is nothing - no command, no necessary inference - in the NT which teaches any "rule" about priestly celibacy in the first place. After all, Peter (the first papa among papists) had a mother-in-law, and Paul said marriage is honorable in all. In other words, they (Roman Catholics) made it up.
The Catholic vow of celibacy for priests and nuns severely restricts the number of young people that are willing to serve in the ministry. There is a local Catholic church that hired an Episcopalian minister that was married, because there was a shortage of priests that were willing to serve.
Even though times change, religion should not. Just as God does not change neither should the church- they are both the same 'now and forever'. If Church tradition can so easily change then what do we truly believe? We should not change the Church to fit in with our lives and desire, we should change our lives to fit in with what the church is. Taking a vow of celibacy allows Priests to entirely focus their lives on God.
Furthermore, a Priest would not be able to care for a child financially, therefore what kind of a life would that child live? A Priest may want a child but is that really a responsible thing to do? Being selfless and giving up that right allows them to ensure that that child would not grow up in a financially unstable environment.
Priesthood and Marriage are different vocations. Once God calls you on one, you cannot be compatible in the other.
Jesus said that some people do not marry for the sake of the Kingdom. Pouring yourself entirely for the service of the Kingdom means leaving everything you treasure most in the world, your family, your wealth, your honor and status in order for you to put more attention to minister to God's flock.
The Rule of Celibacy is not the reason why there are sex scandals within the priesthood. And the entire Catholic Church should not be judged because of their sinful acts. The priests are just human beings who in one point in their life fail to adhere to the teachings and stray from the path. Perhaps they did not examine themselves properly if they are fit for the priesthood because priesthood is leaving everything you hold dearly for God. But the Rule of Celibacy is not the reason why these scandals occur.
Some people are "practical", saying that the Church should abolish the rule of Celibacy because it's old fashioned at it hinders many modern-day people from getting interested in the priesthood. But with practicality, there must be Faith involved. These traditions have are important to the priesthood and it must be followed. And God calls the right people for the priesthood. It's up to them if they would respond.
The priest has the dicsipline to stay chaste and to give the Holy Church his body, heart, and soul. No matter what! That is one of the reasons he is in that state of celibacy. You cannot split the priorities so can be sated by the joys of the flesh.
Celibacy, like chastity, is a discipline. If you can't even be celibate, you're not really priesthood quality anyway. It's better to have a few good priests than many bad ones. You can't give 100% to your wife and the Church, and you certainly shouldn't split it 50-50. Anyone who claims that allowing married priests will help the shortage is wrong, because the Orthodox Catholics have the same shortage and they allow marriage.
The vow of celibacy is there for a reason. Priests devote most of their time to their many duties If a priest has a wife and kids, it limits the time a priest has for masses, services, and ability to travel. A lot of priests I know have gone to serve in Rome for years; they couldn't do that if they had a family. They also have many 24/7 duties. Although the Church has the power to repeal the celibacy requirement, it just isn't a good idea.
Why bother taking a vow they will never keep? Most Catholic priests signed up because they were desperate to get access to choirboys and other young males – breaking a vow is a very minor sin compared to child abuse and raping a minor – even in the Catholic Church - if they weren't obliged to take a vow maybe some heterosexual men who are not paedophiles might consider joining the Priesthood?
Because Catholic priests are looked to as both spiritual and moral leaders, I think it is important that they have only the strongest devotion to their faith. So, the sacrifices they make by taking a vow of celibacy are not only necessary, but also stand as proof of their devoutness.
I think people like to assume men have way less control over their desires than women. It's just a stereotype! Women have these same desires and can feel them as strongly as men just in different ways. It is a part of the Catholic tradition. Religious practices should not be abolished by state. Church and State are separate. If people don't like being celibate they should not become a Catholic priest.