Monday, April 25, 2005

Rabbi Boteach on Priestly Celibacy

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach on why as a Rabbi, he questions the utility of priestly celibacy.

An interesting, well-thought-out essay that avoids the tendency toward whining that the liberal critiques of celibacy have had. Perhaps this is due to, rather than in spite of, the fact that he himself is Jewish rather than Catholic. Most of the liberal critiques of priestly celibacy that I have heard seem to come from lapsed Catholics, who in essence are upset at the Church for restricting them when they were young, and who want, after a fashion, either vindication or revenge.

Boteach, on the other hand, can look at the issue without all of the personal baggage that lapsed Catholic critics usually carry with them.

In any case, I personally am not in favor of priestly celibacy, or, for that matter, with priesthood. I do not believe that we need other humans to act as middle-men between us and God. Jesus, who is both God and man, serves as that bridge in His very nature. Of course, I am a Baptist, so my beliefs would veer away from the Catholic Church's on this issue.

UPDATE: I am not in favor of mandatory celibacy. I am not against voluntary celibacy. Thanks to Nate B. for his comment, which reminded me of this.

That is all.

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