Pope Francis responded on Monday to statements from his predecessor Benedict XVI. Benedict writes in a book that comes out on Wednesday that celibacy is sacred within the church and that this should not be altered.
A spokesperson for Francis said Monday that the pope is entirely behind celibacy.
The reason for Benedict’s statement is that the current Pope said last year that married men should also be able to become priests in remote areas where there is a shortage of priests.
“I can’t keep quiet about this,” Benedict said in his book.
Pope Francis said through his spokesperson that celibacy could never become optional. “I remember that Pope Paul VI said,” I’d rather die than change the law on celibacy. I contemplate celibacy is a gift for the church. “