A high-ranking Vatican official has said he is pressing the Catholic Church to let priests be married. Citing a shortage of priests in some remote regions of the world, he says the church should allow married men to act as priests.
Bishop Erwin Krautler, secretary for the Commission on the Pan-Amazon Region, wants the subject on the agenda at a meeting in the Vatican in 2019, he told the Austrian news agency KNA.
The proposal centers around the question of allowing faithful Catholic married men to act as priests, including saying Mass and hearing confessions.
In the Catholic Church, the Code of Canon Law requires that Clerics are obliged to observe perfect and perpetual continence for the sake of the kingdom of heaven and therefore are bound to abstaining from marriage and sexual relations which is a special gift of God by which sacred ministers can adhere more easily to Christ with an undivided heart and are able to dedicate themselves more freely to the service of God and humanity.
The logic of the church is, in part, that, being free from the obligations of marriage and family life, priests are freer to live out the pastoral demands of the priesthood.
CNN reports Pope Francis said in an interview in March 2017 that he would be open to studying the question.