From the BBC website (emphasis added)…
Retired Pope Benedict XVI has issued a defence of priestly celibacy in the Catholic Church as his successor considers easing a ban on married men serving as priests.
Pope Benedict made the appeal in a book co-authored with Cardinal Robert Sarah.
It comes in response to a proposal to allow married men to be ordained as priests in the Amazon region.
Pope Benedict, who retired in 2013, said he could not remain silent on the issue.
In the book, Pope Benedict says celibacy, a centuries-old tradition within the Church, has “great significance” because it allows priests to focus on their duties.
The 92-year-old says “it doesn’t seem possible to realise both vocations [priesthood and marriage] simultaneously”.
It is rare for Pope Benedict, who was the first pontiff to resign in almost 600 years, to intervene in clerical matters.
The Vatican is yet to comment on the book, which was previewed in part by French newspaper Le Figaro before its full publication on Monday.
Vatican commentators have reacted with surprise to Benedict’s intervention, suggesting it breaks with convention.
“Benedict XVI is really not breaking his silence because he (and his entourage) never felt bound to that promise. But this is a serious breach,” Massimo Faggioli, a historian and theologian at Villanova University, tweeted.
The comments by Pope Benedict were described as “incredible” by Joshua McElwee, a journalist for the National Catholic Reporter… Twitter post by @joshjmac…
As I digest this, I’m realizing how incredible it is. A former pope speaking in public about something his successor is currently in the process of considering. (118 7:17 PM – Jan 12, 2020) …
For many, celibacy is a key part of being a Catholic priest. A priest is supposed to be married to God and not be distracted by what some consider to be worldly concerns like a wife or a family.
For traditionalists, this is about the direction in which Pope Francis is taking the Church.
Some critics regard the idea of allowing married priests in the Amazon as a pretext to abolishing celibacy as a requirement altogether….
Click here to read entire BBC Report
It’s downright hilarious to read the shocked comments of the alleged “Vatican experts/commentators” who speak of a “serious breach” and describe as “incredible” the fact that the previous Pope, Benedict XVI, should actually speak out to defend Catholic Tradition, in this case, the traditional teaching on celibacy. Talk about “diabolical disorientation” – writ large! Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us!
Far from keeping silence and “obeying” this horrendous pope, Benedict should have spoken out a long time ago. In fact, of course, he should not have resigned/abdicated in the first place. He, as much as Pope Francis, will be called to account for the scandals, indeed the near destruction of the Church in human terms, in these times. Both before and AFTER his resignation/abdication. Better late than never, however, he is to be congratulated on this occasion. Agreed?