RCIA 481: Bishops and Priests


The Church is clear about the proper duties of bishops and presbyters. Let’s read today’s section for review:

481. It is the office of the bishop to receive baptized Christians into the full c0mmunion of the Catholic Church. But a priest to whom the bishop entrusts the celebration of the rite has the faculty of confirming the candidate within the rite of reception (Rite of Confirmation 7b), unless the person has already been validly confirmed.

The usual practice, by far, is that priests receive baptized Christians into full communion. The rite reminds clergy, and all of us, that reception as well as initiation is a responsibility of the bishop–a view that dates back to the times of smaller dioceses, and when notable bishops left us the legacy of a baptismal theology. I don’t know that we’ve yet to recover this as much as we’re faced with the pragmatic situation: it is the parish clergy who are involved with initiation ministry, if any ordained priest is at all.


About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in the Pacific Northwest, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
This entry was posted in post-conciliar liturgy documents, RCIA, Rites. Bookmark the permalink.

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