"Against Mandatory Clerical Celibacy"

Question: Does life agree with nature or not?

Answer: If life agrees with nature and never rejects it, also nature agrees with life. God said to mankind: Grow and multiply; therefore also priests since they are human beings, come to maturity owing to that blessing. If it lets them grow up according to God's will, lets them procreate as well, if it's true that "the whole can be recognized by a part"; indeed growing up is only a part of the blessing.

Well, if growing is a part of the divine blessing and procreation another one and so all the remaining promises, then all the parts together form the whole unity. Of course if in the priest you don't find all the parts but only some of them he isn't perfect. How can the man who possesses imperfectly God's blessing bless the others?

Moreover, if the priest doesn't grow in both: age and knowledge, as God's blessing established, he doesn't procreate either; if instead he comes to maturity, obviously he'll get a breed. In fact, from a thing you can get the knowledge of the necessity of the other: God's gifts are without repentance. If this is the truth, those who prevent that God's blessing get its effect, are both God's and nature's enemies no less than murderous peoples.

As God has created no limbs of the human body in vain, but each one for its utility, it's necessary for this reason to refrain only from those things in which God is clearly scorned and offended. But Zechariah's and many others' married life in the New Testament proves that a legitimate wedding and their fruits are respected in cooperation with God and not against.

Objection: Writing these things, you exalt marriage because God has blessed it in the paternity of Saints. But what about virginity? As the Lord, new Adam, was virgin, isn't obvious that what comes from the same Christ must observe virginity as the Lord himself and imitate Him mainly and not the elder Adam?

Answer: As we can't imitate his birth without a human contribution, without passion or corruption from the Virgin, so it's also impossible to imitate the perfection of the virginity, if you don't get a divine help from heaven. The Lord, talking about this question, said: "Who is capable of that, be that", showing that not everybody can understand this gift. As the teachers of the Holy Church say, the faith in Christ is the renewal of the human nature, not its annulment: faith is either the destroyer of passions and sin or the healer of nature. I think that the faith in Christ doesn't ruin the creative plan of God: God doesn't contradict himself and so neither his eternal decrees. "God cheers up in his works", according to the prophet, they aren't only those who observe virginity, but even those who fear and love God in the bond of matrimony.

Marriage is the root of virginity and if you let it dry, there won't be fruit. So marriage is necessary for virginity and God's total will, that is man's justice, truth, wisdom, strength, and all the other virtues. If men didn't procreate, where could priests, monks, martyrs and all the others come from?

If God's law for mankind isn't universal, but only particular, why does God ask from sons the fruits of the laws that their fathers received? Moses' law and that of grace were given for the restoration of the natural law created by God, which comes from the first man and is in everybody in the same way: in the same way we don't want to die or to be damaged, so we've got natural and innocent passions: hunger, thirst, sleep fear, etc. How couldn't be universal the laws of the human nature, revealed both in the New and Old Testament, since the principles of natural law created by God can be found in ourselves? S. Peter defined God's speeches "words of life", because they generate life for human nature.

If they are of life, certainly they agreed with the living nature; if they agree, who is so irresponsible to refuse his own nature to run along with life? If the law of sin has become universal, handed down from father to son naturally, why God's law, greatly superior, doesn't remain in the nature universally, since God has said "to use mercy in thousand generations on those that love him"? If the Law of the Gospel is universal, as it is actually, it maintains and supports mankind in its continuity, blessing, increasing and giving it the eternal life; it doesn't reduce, neither suppresses or forbids the growth of those that preach and listen. Of course, he who announces the Good must be an exemplary man: how could, otherwise, the Good be recognized as universal?

byzantine clerical dressing

What does it mean: "Comparing spiritual things with spiritual things"?

Answer: Every law of the Old Testament is a shadow of our figure, that is of the Evangelic truth, according to the Apostle: "Because the law, getting the shadow of the future good, not the same alive image of the things..." But, if He who has drawn the shadow has been wise, certainly he hasn't drawn anything more or less, but he illuminated the perfect shadow of the image that succeeded it. In that there were men who are the archetypes of priests, in this spiritual men. In that the law didn't prohibit priests the requirement of nature but only the excesses, in this some men, against apostles' lessons prohibit them and so this connection, the body of the shadow doesn't distinguish itself and doesn't come to a completion. But men want to be wiser than God who has modeled the shadow and so has made human nature.

As the Latins want that their priests persist in virginity, forbid them to be married, and so they fall into licentiousness and adultery, while the apostle has said: " to have wives as if you didn't have them", and "comparing spiritual things with spiritual things". These men haven't a place where they can compare spiritual things among themselves, but rather between adultery and avidity.

Virginity is beautiful, but only for those who can comprehend it. As the law concerns priesthood not virginity, it's obvious that such a binding isn't a freedom law but a violence one. St. Paul, who has legislated about everybody and clearly written the laws of priesthood, couldn't include in this code the prohibition for priests to be married? He was content to say: "I prefer that everybody are like me, but to avoid licentiousness let every man have his wife and every woman have her husband". Couldn't God, who had prohibited all impurities in the Old Testament, have forbidden also this, if he had considered it an impurity, in the same way of licentiousness and adultery?

While everything that is pure for laymen, like different foods, is so also for clerics, only marriage would be pure for laymen and impure for priests! This institution, whose goodness God saw and blessed even before the fall of Adam; then how could what has been foreseen by God like good and right and given by Him to mankind, be judged bad and wrong by the Westerners?

How can something be right for laymen and wrong for clerics? Adultery is bad for laymen and clerics, and things that are forbidden, are bad for everybody without exception.

I say again: How can marriage be right and blessed for laymen, instead wrong and condemnable for priests?

I say what was in the shadow of the Old Testament right and blessed, is so also in the evangelic truth, I mean what comes from nature. I think the saint Apostle wanted to mean that, when he told Timothy: "Now the Spirit says explicitly that lately someone will apostatize from the faith, following seducing spirits and satanic doctrines; some men will suggest falsehood for hypocrisy, corrupt in their conscience; they"ll forbid to get married and order to abstain from food which God created for believers and for those who have known the truth, so that they use them to give thanks? Each of God's creatures is good and no one to be reproved, being used to give thanks; because it is sanctified for God's word and for the prayer."

We know that priests are God's angels but when they announce to people the divine wills; instead when they eat, drink, sleep and are subject to the other necessities they are human beings. But when some of them living in the luxury shave themselves, vain and lazy, and what is worse, commit adultery with neighbors' wives, after having in this way disregarded God, they approach the Sacraments and celebrate the liturgy, then are these men priests or sacrilegists in God's judgment? If they had had legitimate wives, they wouldn't have lost control of themselves.

If Latins say that priest has Church as his bride instead of the wife and the woman, we say that from antiquity Christians had Church and, at the same time, their wives. Instead the Church is Christ's bride and the priest is a cooperator, assistant, administrator and servant of Christ.

If marriage was a bad and impure condition, God wouldn't have blessed it like a good deed in the Old and the New Testament, and he wouldn't taken part in it, accomplishing there his first miracle: he didn't sit on the blasphemous' chair. Not even the Raphael Angel would let have Tobiah's son marry.

Man and woman are only one image of God and only one flesh so what is one by nature doesn't differ and what doesn't differ is similar and he who offends and hates his fellow, offends himself and scorns also the Creator. Marriage is the treasure of the human race and instrument of immortality for men: if God didn't create death, to which the supervened sin opened the doors to exterminate the man, it's obvious that marriage, producing things opposite to the death and fighting with it, proves to be cooperator with God, stimulating other men instead of those who die. Those who fight marriage, fight against God with the same intention of the death: in fact as death kills men, so this man prevents new men from appearing and make useless God's blessing.

Priests can't be left out of the blessed paternity: God's blessings don't oppose each others and you can't apply them the proverb: If I don't put out the first, the second doesn't light up. We see saint Zechariah, who was priest and prophet, generate the great prophet saint John, during the law of wrath. If that law, which was an instrument of the wrath of God and killed men, didn't prevent priests who were willing from marriage, much more the law of mercy and grace, now in force, doesn't forbid it. The law of grace is said: to last in glory, certainly it persists and works in the nature that remains, not in that one which disappears. If this is the truth, grace doesn't live among Latins' priests, but it abandons them; instead among Greeks' priests, goes away with fathers and remains with sons, among them there are nature and the unlimited law of grace, only apparently possessed by Latins.