ABOUT CELIBACY

In the ecclesiastical sphere, the celibacy raises upon the stairs of the church hierarchy, opens the way to the Church administrative levers or the Church governance, i.e. the condition to have administrative levers of the Church is first of all the celibacy. The transition to such a system previously was based neither on the Bible nor the early church tradition, if we mean the early Church until the 4th century.

Such a system was smooth shifting in Armenia, the first Christian country in the world, in the 4th century. According to one point of view, the idea was to preserve the Church’s properties, so that married persons would not pass Church properties, material possessions or farms to their children as a heritage, and church properties don’t become split. But first of all complete dedication and devotion to God and the idea of serving the Church with entire zeal were important.

The transition to that system of Church governance was very painful in the Catholic Church in the 11th century. Pope Gregory the 7th, according to his religious beliefs and economic reasons, thought that all clergy henceforth would serve unmarried even those who were already married. And he forcibly separated the priests from their families. Pope Urban 2nd also continued this policy. Shortly after that, the priests’ wives and children died of hunger, poverty, epidemics in harsh conditions being deprived of family guardian. Pope Urban even sold priests’ wives into slavery, the money went to the church, and priests’ children were thrown into the streets or again sold into slavery.

One of the arguments on behalf of celibacy the apostle Paul’s words: “But he that is married careth for the things that are of the world, how he may please his wife. There is a difference also between a wife and a virgin. The unmarried woman careth for the things of the Lord that she may be holy both in the body and in spirit: but she that is married careth for the things of the world, how she may please her husband (1 Cor. 7:33-34). But Paul is not talking here about persons, zealously rendering religious service, as he did not even dare to say that about Christ’s apostles, most of whom were married (Matthew 8:14-15; Mark 1:29-31; Luke 4:38-40, 1 Cor. 9:5).

In the Book of Revelation John says that those who have lived with celibacy, who are virgins will always be with Christ (see Rev. 14:4). But long before these words Christ gave greater promise to His apostles, most of whom were married, saying that they may eat and drink at His table in His kingdom, and sit on the thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel” (Matt. 26:29, Luke 22:30). The apostle Paul shows that Christ’s married apostles were even leading about their wives (1 Cor. 9:5). Therefore, the spread of Christianity in the world is realized with family devotion and propaganda, when the apostles’ family members were their fellow servants and assistants. However, now we have what we have, and we give thanks to God that He reveals admirable monks, especially from the youth and new generation, who have to serve God and people with the idea of complete devotion.

Regarding the Catholic Church, it should be noted that the Church itself is sacred and can again wipe, clean those who have slipped, priests who have sinned, and here the Church should not be identified with clergy. We see that the Catholic Church in its original purpose, is spreading the word of Christ, the light of the gospel is struggling against the modern problems about which the positions of the Churches, founded by the apostles, coincide. Thus, the Church carries out a mission, so that humankind lives piously, according to the precepts of Christ.

new original people person piously point of view policy Pope position possession poverty precept priest problem promise propaganda purpose reason religious servant serve service slavery sphere spirit system throne tradition transition tribe unmarried virgin way wife wipe woman word world youth zeal