Recently I was speaking with a colleague who was concerned about her pastor’s liturgical practice. I thought this might be a matter especially for the clergy in my reading audience as to how to handle a rather delicate situation.
My friend is a pastoral associate, working for a priest about twenty years ordained. He doesn’t seem to use chrism for infant baptisms. According to my friend (and I hope I have this wrong) the required anointing in his view is to be done with the oil of catechumens after the baptism. The pre-baptismal prayer of exorcism is done without oil.
(Just for reference the pre-baptismal exorcism is optional, but the anointing with the oil of catechumens accompanies the prayer. Chrism is always used after infant baptism. I reminded my friend of this and she thought she had it right.)
When my friend gently approached him that his practice was incorrect, he rebuffed her. Would a liturgist’s viewpoint help? I didn’t think so. So I’ll turn it over to you.
How would you approach this priest if he were your pastor? Or a brother priest in another parish? Is this a grave enough issue that you would speak with him were he not your pastor? (Do you think I should butt in?) Would you just call the bishop or the dicoesan liturgy office?