Celibacy Continence and Child Abuse

Priests & Child Abuse

Historical studies demonstrate an unbroken tradition of clerical continence

Several important historical studies of clerical continence preceded my canonical examinations of this topic. I found the following works insightful.

The best short overviews of this matter are:

  • Alfons Maria Cdl. Stickler (Austrian prelate, 1910-2007), The Case for Clerical Celibacy, trans. B. Ferme, (Ignatius Press, 1995) 106 pp., from Stickler's Seine Entwicklungsgeshichte und seine theologischen Grundlagen (1993). Order English version here. Excepts from Stickler's Case are available on line here.
  • Thomas McGovern, Priestly Celibacy Today (Scepter/Midwest Theological Forum, 1998) 248 pp., esp. pp. 58-65. Order it here. McGovern's basic text is apparently available on-line here.
  • Magdalen Ross, extended blog post "On clerical continence" (18 Jan 2011), here.

Extended studies of clerical continence as observed during the first millennium are:

  • Christian Cochini (French Jesuit, b. 1929), The Apostolic Origins of Priestly Celibacy, trans. N. Marans (Ignatius Press, 1990) 469 pp., from Cochini's Origens apostoliques du célibat sacerdotal (1981), a doctoral dissertation directed by Jean Cdl. Danilieu. Order it here.
  • Roman Cholij, Clerical Celibacy in East and West (Gracewing, 1989) 226 pp., available in part on-line here.
  • Stefan Heid (German priest, b. 1961), Celibacy in the Early Church: the beginnings of a discipline of obligatory continence for clerics in East and West, trans. M. Miller (Ignatius Press, 2000) 376 pp., from Heid's Zölibat in der frühen Kirche: Die Anfänge einer Enthaltsamkeitsplicht für Kleriker in Ost und West (1997). Order English version here.

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