Q. If priests could marry, wouldn’t that solve these sex scandals?
A. No. Most pedophiles are married men. So, marriage does not cure pedophilia. This is a sexual disorder that is not easily eradicated. A few years ago many prominent married Protestant pastors were involved is sex scandals. No one called for abolishing the institution of marriage or for the Protestant churches to have their ministers remain celibate. The cause and effect relationship just doesn’t exist between celibacy and sexual perversion.
God has called all men and women to remain celibate until they marry. We are called to self-control and self-mastery. The problem is, in today’s culture there is very little encouragement to do this except from Christianity. Should we solve the epidemic of STD’s , unwed mothers, and premarital sex by having our children marry in adolescence? Historically other cultures have done exactly this with arranged marriages.
Besides, in the most current scandal, the priests have molested adolescent boys, so they are homosexual. Should the Church, then, not only allow the priests to marry but have a married homosexual priesthood?
The problem was ignorance about the possibility of a “cure” with counseling. Also, the bishop’s wanted to be forgiving and give the offending priest a second chance. These two factors led to moving priests around when they should have been dealt with by removing them from any access to our children and teens. Or, perhaps, even removed from the active priesthood after a repeat failure.
Where could the Church put sexually disordered priests? In administration, at the diocese? They still might act out with people they come in contact with or the other disordered priests in administration, children at the park, in their neighborhood, etc. And still, we would have headlines, Diocesan Priest Accused of Molesting Children in Neighborhood or Diocesan Priests Seen Drinking at Gay Bar.