Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Wife Of Married Baton Rouge Catholic Priest - No One Expects Anything of Me

The Catholic newspaper for the Diocese of Baton Rouge has an article on the wife of the only married Priest in the Diocese of Baton Rouge. See Life as a wife of a priest not so odd for Bass

In it she said something interesting:

Father Bass had been an Episcopal priest at the second largest Episcopal Church in the nation before the entire family converted to Catholicism in 1995 and moved to Baton Rouge, Donna Bass’s hometown. Father Bass taught religion in local Catholic high schools and worked as a church choir director and organist while he went through the process which allowed him to be ordained a Catholic priest in 2003.
“Do I feel different? Yes and no,” Donna Bass said. As the wife of an Episcopal priest, there was a command performance – a certain amount of things that were expected of her, she said. There is no protocol for a wife of a Catholic priest. There is no expected behavior. “People don’t always know what to do with me, but they love me,” she said.
“My path is to be the mother of the home and family and support my husband. My No. 1 goal is taking care of Frank. That’s my calling. It’s a little different because you never know when he may have to run somewhere, just like a doctor’s life. But it has always been that way for us. That’s our life.”

Being from a Protestant background it does not take much observation that being the wife or children of a preacher is not exactly easy at times. One reason children of preacher jokes are so funny is it's based in a sort of reality. However I have found out of necessity at times wives of pastors have to throw up protective shields. The fish bowl as it were can be suffocating for some.

Anyway I suspect this dynamic might be a tad different in some of the ordinariates where a largely Anglican now Catholic flock might have the same expectations of their  married clergy.

Still its a interesting  viewpoint and the whole article is good to read.


Katy Anders said...

Cool article.

I know a priest here in Houston who was an Episcopalian bishop before he converted and became a Catholic priest, and he is married.

As a lifelong Catholic, it FEELS like an odd situation to me, but... NO one else seems to think it is.

With the number of Anglican and Episcopalian converts, we're probably going to see a lot more of this. But the Church's handling of the issue sure has changed since the conversion of married Eastern Catholics in the Twenties!

James H said...

Its def different I think depending on how much the wife or spouse wants to have a role in Parish life. Also of course at least I feel a tas more hesitant callinga Priest if I nned them after "working hours" at times

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