Who is Qualified to Become an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion?

Q: Can openly married homosexuals become extraordinary ministers of communion?

This happened in our parish.  I sent an email to the bishop regarding church policy on this and I was directed to meet with the priest who allowed this.  I met with the priest and he was in a controlled rage the whole meeting.  He scorned me for not following protocol by speaking with him first. He lectured me about divine law and the guidelines for becoming an extraordinary minister.  He never told me his exact position or what he intended to do…. What do you think?  I know we are all sinners but… –Kent Continue reading

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What Do You Do With the Deacon Who Refuses to be Ordained a Priest?

Q1: We have a seminarian in our diocese, who spent a summer in my parish.  He was expecting to become a priest several years ago, but the bishop declined to ordain him.  Nobody knows why.  Today he’s just a deacon and is working in the diocesan office, doing administrative work that any layperson can do.

Does this sound strange to you?  People are wondering if there’s some problem with him, otherwise why wouldn’t he be a priest already?  A couple of us asked our pastors about him, and they were evasive…. If he’s a problem, why not just let him go altogether?  Unemployment is high here and we laypeople question why we’re paying this man a salary, instead of hiring someone who really needs a job to feed his or her family. –Erika

Q2:  In our diocese we have a deacon who was ordained for the priestly ordination. Some months after his diaconate ordination, he began to have a fear of receiving the priestly ordination. He is now a deacon without doing his ministry. What does the Code of Canon Law say about this? What is the responsibility of the Bishop for him? –Father B. Continue reading

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Why Would an Illegitimate Man be Barred from the Priesthood?

Q: I heard about a boy who wept when he found out that he could not be admitted to our local seminary. The reason I heard was because he was an illegitimate child.

I also read in the Catholic Encyclopedia that illegitimacy was indeed an impediment from receiving the sacrament of holy orders.  Thanks to your post I learned about the canons regarding the impediments to ordination.

Now I am curious, does the law prohibiting illegitimate children from becoming priests still hold?  The current Canon Law does not seem to include it. –Kevin Continue reading

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Laypeople Can Always Baptize–But When Should They?

Q: My son was married to a non-Catholic girl for 7 years, and they have three boys. Just after she gave birth to the third, my daughter-in-law snapped and ran out on my son, taking the children with her and moving to [a city over a thousand miles away]. It’s been a nightmare.

After fighting a legal battle, she got a divorce and custody of the kids, whom my son is required to support. He can only visit them every few months, since they’re so far away and travelling there is expensive. Needless to say she isn’t raising the boys Catholic, so when my son visits them he takes them to Sunday Mass, and tries to teach them the catechism basics on his own as best he can.

The baby wasn’t baptized in their parish church, because my daughter-in-law ran off before there was even time to arrange it. My son intends to baptize him on his next visit himself. The baby isn’t in danger of death, but my son says that if he doesn’t baptize him, he’ll never get baptized because the mother will never allow it. Is there any problem with him doing this? –Liz Continue reading

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If the Church Has Never Permitted Divorce, Why Did Henry VIII Expect the Pope to Give Him One?

Q: I understand that the Catholic Church does not approve of divorce.  But I do not understand why Henry VIII asked the Pope to grant him a divorce from his wife, and expected the Pope to grant it.  Was there perhaps a loophole for royalty back in the 16th century? –Derek Continue reading

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