1st Edition

Celibacy, Seminary Formation, and Catholic Clerical Sexual Abuse Exploring Sociological Connections and Alternative Clerical Training

By Vivencio O. Ballano Copyright 2024
    226 Pages
    by Routledge

    226 Pages
    by Routledge

    Does the current celibate, semi-monastic, and all-male seminary formation contribute to the persistence of clerical sexual abuse in the Roman Catholic Church?

    Applying sociological theories on socialization, total institutions, and social resistance as the primary conceptual framework, and drawing on secondary literature, media reports, the author’s experience, interviews, and Church documents, this book argues that the Catholic Church’s institution of the celibate seminary formation as the only mode of clerical training for Catholic priests has resulted in negative unintended consequences to human formation such as the suspension of normal human socialization in society, psychosexual immaturity, and weak social control against clerical sexual abuse. The author thus contends that celibate training, while suitable for those who do live in religious or monastic communities, is inappropriate for those who are obliged to live alone and work in parishes. As such, an alternative model for diocesan clerical formation is advanced.

    A fresh look at the aptness – and effects – of celibate formation for diocesan clergy, this volume is the first to relate the persistence of Catholic clerical sexual abuse to celibate seminary formation, exploring the structural links between the two using sociological arguments and proposing an apprenticeship-based model of formation, which has numerous advantages as a form of clerical training. It will therefore appeal to scholars and students of religion, sociology, and theology, as well as those involved with seminary formation.

    1. Introduction 2. Shifting Method in Catholic Clerical Training and Human Formation Against Sexual Abuse 3. Celibate Seminary Formation, Total Institution, and Clerical Sexual Abuse 4. Gender and Sexuality Formation in the Seminary and Clerical Sexual Abuse 5. Celibate Clerical Formation, Social Resistance, and Sexual Abuse in the Catholic Church 6. Heterosexual Clerical Sexual Abuse and Seminary Formation 7. Homosexual Clerical Sexual Abuse and Seminary Formation 8. Child Clerical Sexual Abuse, Pedophilia, and Seminary Formation 9. Exploring Alternative Clerical Training and Married Priesthood in Current Age


    Dr. Vivencio O. Ballano is the Chairperson of the Master of Arts in Sociology, Graduate Studies Program, and Associate Professor 5 at the Department of Sociology, Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP), Manila. He received his master’s (theology) and doctoral (sociology) degrees from the Ateneo de Manila University. He has published four Scopus-indexed books under the imprint Springer Nature. His fifth book entitled In Defense of Married Priesthood was published by Routledge in 2023. Dr. Ballano has also published several Scopus-indexed journal articles on the sociology of law, religion, media piracy, postdisaster management, digital education, and Catholic social teaching. He underwent ten years of diocesan and religious seminary training before becoming a sociologist.

    ‘This book is very timely! After three decades of endless stories about clerical sexual abuse in the Catholic Church, and almost invariably useless gestures to deal with it, the time is now for much more far-reaching structural reforms, including those proposed by this author.’ - A.A.J. DeVille, Associate Professor of Psychology, University of Saint Francis, USA