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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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Why can’t the Poor (like my brother-in-law) have a funeral Mass, but the rich and powerful can?


Full Question

When my brother-in-law died, there was no priest available and so he couldn’t have a funeral Mass. A deacon said prayers at the funeral home and at the grave site. At Senator Ted Kennedy’s funeral, there were six priests and a cardinal. Do the rich and powerful get special consideration?


I am very sorry for your loss and sorry that your family was unable to arrange for a funeral Mass for your relative. Unfortunately, human nature being what it is, it is very possible that more effort is made to accommodate the well-known and influential. This isn’t the fault of the Catholic Church, but of frail human beings within the Church. The good news is that you can arrange for memorial Masses to be said for the repose of your relative’s soul. This can be done either at your parish or by a religious order. Just contact the Coordinator for memorial Masses and ask what needs to be done.




  1. Jasmine Reply

    Unfortunately, this did not truly answer the question asked.

  2. Stroud Reply

    We were able to have a funeral mass for our family members, we are neither rich nor powerful, what we are is active members of our parish, our priest was just looking after the care of a parish family.

  3. Rechtsaußen Kerl Reply

    Absolute rubbish. Any Catholic is entitled to have a Requiem Mass. As a Traditional Latin Mass attendee with the ICKSP I know that when I die, I will have a solemn sung Requiem Mass and I am far from rich. Disgusted from England!

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