There's an opinion piece in the NYT about celibacy and Roman Catholicism. It's written by the son of a former priest. He tells the tale of South American priests who married and remained priests. Sacre bleu!
Not only had Podesta married in 1972, he had also devoted the rest of his life to winning recognition for priests who had made similar choices, and for the women with whom they now shared their lives. Mandatory celibacy itself, Podesta suggested, was based largely on “the undervaluation of women” and the notion that men tainted by female contact should be prohibited from approaching the altar; to rectify this situation, he enlisted his wife as a concelebrant during Mass.
I've never heard that before -- the bit about married men being tainted by women and thus unfit for altar service. But it sounds like it's right on the money. After all, that's how these "pious" men view women, as unclean creatures. This sentiment clangs through many religions, including Islam and the Jewish religion. It's sickening.
The article goes on to describe the new pope's interactions with the Podestas -- both the man and his wife -- while he was in Argentina. It seems there is a slim chance that this pope might change the church's tune on priestly celibacy. It's not a given, not by a long shot, but the article makes it seem possible. That would really be progress and would go a long way toward fixing what ails this sex-obsessed church.