RELIGION

Celibacy In Catholic Church: Is It Coming To An End?

03/05/2013 11:22 am ET | Updated Mar 05, 2013

For over 900 years Catholic priests have practiced celibacy; but now that may be changing. After Cardinal Keith O'Brien resigned over sexual misconduct, many are asking it the Catholic Church should reconsider celibacy?

Father Albert Cutie, former Roman Catholic Priest and current Episcopal Priest joins HuffPost Live's Marc Lamont Hill to discuss.

"In the 12th century, the Church basically said that if you wanted to be a priest you had to accept celibacy in a mandatory way," Cutie said. "It mostly had to do with inheritances. The Church did not know how to deal with properties staying with the family of the clergy rather than with the church. So it had a lot to do with finances..."

While it wasn't necessarily for "religious" reasons that celibacy was adopted, the rule soon became the norm for priests.

"Those in power, in charge of communities, were understood to be held to higher standards and that included an imitation of Christ," Teresa Berger, Professor of Liturgical Studies at Yale University, said. "Poverty was one of them, chastity was another;" but Berger said by no means was this a default mandate rather a choice for those who chose to imitate the life of Christ.

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