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06 Nov 2015 News Vatican No comments

A World without Poverty - Pope Francis

In his quest towards ensuring the Catholic Church supports the poor and the needy, Pope Francis invited a homeless street vendor for an intimate meeting at the …

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25 Mar 2015 Q&A Comments (19)

Did Jesus alter the commandment about observing the sabbath?

Full Question In a recent This Rock article ("Changing the Sabbath," December 1993), you stated that Christ used his authority to alter the sabbath in Matt…

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30 Mar 2015 Q&A No comments

Is it possible to be Catholic and a body-builder?

Full Question Is it possible to be Catholic and a body-builder? I don't see why God would not want me to be my physical best, but I can see how he wouldn't…

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08 Apr 2016 Articles No comments

Pope Francis's New Document on Marriage: 12 Things to Know and Share

Pope Francis’s much-anticipated document on the family has now been released. Here are 12 things to know and share. 1. What are the basic facts about the …

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15 Apr 2016 Articles No comments

The Ultimate Apologist’s Reading List

This is not an exhaustive list, and just because a book is on this list does not mean I endorse everything in it. Instead, this list should serve as a hel…

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07 Sep 2016 Articles Comments (7)

Why young Catholics love the Extraordinary Form

But don't expect them to disparage the Novus Ordo As a young Catholic growing up in an increasingly secular (or even post-secular) Britain, I am lucky to be ab…

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02 Nov 2014 Articles Comments (3)

Can Lying Ever be Right?

St. Augustine wrote the first extensive treatise on lying (De Mendacio). In it he cites the case of a holy bishop, Firmus of Thagasta, who wished to protect a m…

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21 Dec 2015 Q&A Comments (3)

The priest refused to administer the Sacrament of anointing the sick to my sick baby. Why?

Full Question I asked for the anointing of the sick for my very ill baby, but the priest said that the sacrament is only for people older than six years ol…

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07 Sep 2015 News Vatican Comments (1)

Pope opens the Vatican to refugees, calls on Europe’s churches to follow suit

In light of the massive refugee crisis in Europe, Pope Francis announced Sunday that he will give temporary housing in the Vatican to at least two refugee famil…

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Can a practicing Catholic officiate at a civil wedding ceremony?

Full Question

Can a practicing Catholic officiate at a civil wedding ceremony?

Answer

Assuming that the couple are either non-Catholics not bound by Catholic marital law, that there are no obvious impediments to their marriage (e.g., previous marriage, close blood relationship), and that the Catholic is authorized by the state to officiate at civil wedding ceremonies (e.g., judge, justice of the peace, other recognized official), yes, a Catholic could preside at a civil wedding ceremony. The only caveat would be that a Catholic could not obtain “ordination” from a mail-order or online “ordination” mill, even if his state recognizes marriages performed by individuals who have obtained such “ordinations.”










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