KELLER (CBSDFW.COM) – It is safe to say many boys grow up wanting to follow in their fathers’ footsteps. Not unusual unless your father is a Catholic priest.
“I couldn’t be more happy and couldn’t be more happy that he’s with me”, says Charles Hough III, who will be ordained Saturday morning with his son Charles Hough IV with four other former Episcopal priests.
They rehearsed today for the ceremony that takes place at the Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish in Keller.
A father-son ordination actually is not unheard of in the Catholic church, but it certainly is rare.
“Most of the father and son combination priests in the Catholic church,” says Charles Hough III. “The father was a widower and he became a priest later after his son had become a priest.”
The church is allowing married Episcopal priests into the fold in an effort to reunite with that branch after a centuries-old separation.
During the split Episcopal priests were allowed to marry.
In 2007 Pope Benedict XVI answered a petition from church members and members of the Episcopal church asking that the Episcopal wing be brought back into the Catholic family.
In 2011 the request was granted.
If the episcopal priest already is married — he is allowed to join as a married man. If he is not already married he must remain celibate.
“This has been a movement within the church for decades,” says Charles Hough IV. “Since really, the early 19th century.”
With a father and a son being ordained as Catholic priests, there is obviously a mother involved. So what does Mrs. Hough have to say?”
“A wife of a Catholic priest and the mother of a Catholic priest,” says Charles Hough IV. “That’s a rarity. That’s the real story actually,” he says with a laugh.
“She told me yesterday again,” chimed in the senior Hough. “She said, ‘I feel so blessed at this point and time and can’t wait for tomorrow.'”
The Hough parents also have a daughter. And Charles Hough IV is married with two young children of his own. The entire family will be at tomorrow morning’s ordination.