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Argument: Celibacy is not divine law, only Church law

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Supporting quotations

Lance Morrow. "Let's Priests Marry". Time. Mar. 17, 2002: "In 1431 a church tribunal demanded that Joan of Arc submit to the authority of the church. She shrewdly answered that she submitted to the authority of God, since "our Lord and the church are the same." The church ought to have learned, after all these years, not to push Catholics toward the place where, in their disillusioned hearts, they will, like Joan, listen for the unmediated voice of God and decide that the church, with too many squalors and secrets, is untrustworthy and perhaps an irrelevance."

Rev. Donald Cozzens. "Commentary: Celibacy should be rethought". CNN. May 15, 2009: "How can a gift be legislated? The church answers that if a man is called to the priesthood, God will grant him the gift of celibacy. Many priests today wonder how church leaders know this. Reading the mind of God in this matter -- in any matter of church discipline -- is risky business. [...] More and more Catholics today are coming to understand that celibacy as a universal law for priests had its origins in the 12th century and that during the church's first millennium, priests and bishops -- and at least thirty-nine popes -- were married." Therefore, in the first years of the Church, it was not seen as a gift from God. It can only be seen, therefore, as something that the Church imposed on itself as a discipline and mandate. And, the Church can undo such a mandate."

Muriel Porter. "Church will benefit if priests are able to marry". The Age. January 31, 2005: "Unlike the issue of women priests, which the Pope has declared to be theologically impossible, the celibacy requirement is not a matter of church doctrine. Rather, it is a discipline only formally imposed on the clergy in 1139, when a church council declared clerical marriage invalid. What the church has banned, the church can restore."

Bishop McMahon: "There is no reason why priests shouldn't be allowed to marry. It has always been a matter of discipline rather than doctrine."[1]

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