Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Why Would a Nun Preside Over Catholic Wedding?


With liberals relentlessly and delusionally pushing for women priests, hearing that a nun officiated at a Catholic wedding set off alarms in my head. That can’t be right, I thought.

It was reported in America Magazine that Sister Pierette Thiffault of the Sisters of Providence presided over a wedding at a Catholic church in Lorrainville, Quebec on July 22. Since no priests were available, the bishop of that diocese received Vatican permission for a local nun to officiate. 
My fears were still not quelled, but then I reminded myself that the gates of hell are not forecasted to prevail. So I read on.
Thankfully, the bishop did not say, “As a nod to angry feminists everywhere, women can now start doing men things in the Church.  Forget 2,000 years of consistent Church teachings; it's time we caved just like our Protestant brethren and sister-rens have done. And besides, imagine how happy this will make the media.”
Instead, Bishop Dorylas Moreau explained that a nun presiding over a wedding is “an exceptional situation; not something habitual.” Oh, that’s how it starts, you may be thinking, just as I did.  But fortunately, there’s a good Catholic explanation.
First, consider their problem.  With only 16 priests for 35 parishes in a diocese that covers nearly 9,300 square miles of rugged territory, they’ve got trouble.  With that problem in mind, the Bishop sought permission— because obedience to Church authority matters, —to have a nun represent the Church.
 The Catechism of the Catholic Church states: “According to Latin tradition, the spouses as ministers of Christ’s grace mutually confer upon each other the sacrament of Matrimony by expressing their consent before the Church. (CCC 1623).
In reality, the priest or deacon merely witness the Catholic marriage as it is the couple themselves when they exchange vows that performs the ceremony.”
“The presence of the Church’s minister (and also of the witnesses) visibly expresses the fact that marriage is an ecclesial reality” (CCC 1630). The Code of Canon Law even states that lay persons can serve as witnesses where there is a lack of priests and deacons,
So it’s all good.  At least as far as a nun serving as the witness to a Catholic marriage ceremony. What is not all good is that the Church has a priest shortage.  With that in mind, let us pray for an increase in the priesthood.

O God, Father of all Mercies, provider of a bountiful harvest, send your graces upon those you have called to gather the fruits of your labor;
preserve and strengthen them in their lifelong service of you.
Open the hearts of your children

that they may discern Your Holy Will;

inspire in them a love and desire to surrender themselves to serving others in the name of Your son, Jesus Christ.Teach all your faithful to follow their respective paths in life guided by your divine word and truth.Through the intercession of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary, all the angels, and saints, humbly hear our prayers and grant your Church's needs, through Christ, our Lord. Amen.


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Patti was co-author and managing editor of theAmazing Grace SeriesFollow her at Twitter and Pinterest, like her pages at Dear God Books,  Big Hearted Families,  Catholic News & Inspiration on Facebook, and her author Facebook page.  Sign up at the right column to receive articles in your inbox.  God bless you!

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