The wife of a Byzantine Catholic priest penned her responses to these seven frequently-heard comments / questions:
- “That’s weird.”
- “That’s great! Father John Western-rite should get married, too!”
- “That’s great! Are you a priest, too?”
- “So, you’re Orthodox?”
- “It must be really burdensome on your church to pay for a family.”
- “That’s a bad idea; a priest should have only church and God to be concerned with. Your husband can’t possibly be dedicated to God, the Church and family. It’s just too much.”
- “Is it hard that his vocation to the priesthood is an eternal one while your marriage is only here on earth?”
In her response, she’s thoughtful and honest about the ups and downs of being the wife of a Catholic priest, and the mother of his kids. Her answers started out basic (explaining how it is that her husband is a Catholic priest, and yet not a convert), but by the end, you have a real glimpse into what their day-to-day life is like.
A few parts that I really enjoyed. To the question of women’s ordination, she says in part:
Mary the Mother of God, Martha, her sister Mary and Mary Magdalena all had honored roles in the ministry of Jesus. He didn’t make them apostles even though He allowed them to sit at His feet and listen to Him preach. I’ll remain in the company of these women and try to serve God by their example.
That’s the perfect answer. One need not hate women or think that they’re less than men to think that we’re called to serve in different ways. On what scheduling is like:
Sometimes it does feel like too much. Like many families with a busy life, we have to be flexible. Frequently we celebrate holidays the day before or the day after to accommodate his schedule. […] It is not necessarily a good thing, but we have no day off. If Fr. has any time to relax, he’ll take the kids fishing or to a movie. While a celibate priest might go golfing with friends or practice another hobby, my husband doesn’t have large blocks of time (like a half day) to pursue interests that don’t directly correlate to church, work or family.
And finally, there’s her answer to question #7. But I’ll let you read the post and build up to that part yourself.