Cardinal Egan says possibility of married priests not to be dismissed

ALBANY, N.Y. (CNS) — The possibility the Catholic Church will allow married priests shouldn’t be dismissed, New York Cardinal Edward M. Egan said March 10 during a radio interview. “It’s a perfectly legitimate discussion,” he said during a talk radio program in Albany hosted by Fred Dicker. “I think it has to be looked at.”

Cardinal Egan was in the state capital as part of a legislative lobbying visit. He also discussed various New York legislative issues as well as the broader picture of the church’s public policy on topics such as same-sex marriage and access to abortion for minors.

Cardinal Egan’s resignation as head of the New York archdiocese was accepted by the pope Feb. 23. He will serve as apostolic administrator of the archdiocese until April 15 when Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan of Milwaukee will be installed as his successor.

When asked about priestly celibacy by Dicker, Cardinal Egan said he thought the subject would be coming up for discussion by the church’s hierarchy. “I’m not so sure it wouldn’t be a good idea to decide (whether priests can be married) on the basis of geography and culture, not to make an across-the-board determination,” the cardinal said. He noted that priests in the Eastern Catholic churches are allowed to be married with “no problem at all.”

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