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Anh Le wrote:

Hi guys,

In the following article, Bishop's Quiet Action Allows Priest Both Flock and Family, the third paragraph in the article says:

". . . since the Vatican allowed married Episcopal clergymen to be re-ordained as
Roman Catholic priests 17 years ago."

My understanding is that married men are not allowed to become priests.

  • Can you please explain the statement in the quote above?


Anh Le
Your Humble Servant
"Whoever exalts himself will be humbled; And whoever humbles himself will be exalted"

  { Can you please explain how Episcopal clergymen can become Catholic priests? }

Eric replied:

Hi Anh,

It means exactly what it says. Married Episcopal priests who convert to Catholicism are allowed under certain circumstances, with a special dispensation from the Pope, to be ordained as Catholic priests, and remain married (and retain use of their conjugal rights).

This is called the Pastoral Provision and was instituted to facilitate the conversion of Anglican clergymen.

The celibate clergy has always been merely a discipline. In the Eastern Catholic churches, they have had a married clergy since ancient times so there is nothing fundamentally contrary to the faith about it, hence the pope can grant a dispensation for the ordination of a married man.

This Pastoral Provision is the only case a married Latin Rite man may be ordained and keep his married life.

Hope this helps,


John replied:

Hi Anh,

Just to add to what my brother apologist, Eric has said, while the pastoral provision has been used for Anglican clergy, I'm pretty sure that some ministers entering Holy Mother Church from other denominations have received this dispensation.

I believe I have heard of at least one Lutheran and one Methodist married clergyman who were both ordained in the Catholic Church, however, I would imagine these men had to go through a longer process because these denominations are far less sacerdotal and liturgical than ministers from the Anglican Community.

If anyone is interested in pursuing this aspect of the Catholic faith they should contact
Marcus Grodi from the Coming Home Network.

John DiMascio

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