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 Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation. 
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New post Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation.
It is my understanding that sometime in the late 1940s or perhaps a bit later, Pius XII or the Holy Office authorized priests to confer the Sacrament of Confirmation.

Before I present my evidence for this, I would like to hear your comments on this subject.

I suspect that once we arrive at the end of the discussion, we will have alleviated SOME of the anxiety that many of us have regarding the lack of ministers of this Sacrament, a Sacrament which I feel is essential for our young these days.

To begin, my evidence comes from several commentaries on Canon Law, and from various articles in The Canon Law Digest. My original investigations on this subject were forced upon me by a short notice I read in a later edition of "The Priest's New Ritual" compiled by the Rev. Paul Griffith. I will be happy to post a PDF of this notice to our website if anyone here would care to read it.

The primary criteria for this permission was that there be no available bishops, who are, of course, the primary ministers of this great Sacrament.

One serious problem with implementing this permission, if it exists (and I firmly believe it does) is that so few of our good priests have even heard of it.

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New post Re: Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation
There is of course absolutely no question on whether a simple priest can validly confer Confirmation, as all theologians agree that he is the extraordinary minister of this Sacrament.

But I have major doubts in regards to the current situation of priests ordained by independent groups/Bishops without jurisdiction.

I think several theologians hold, that the power of Confirmation rests in bishop perfectly or completely, but in the priest incompletely. While the confection of the Sacrament pertains is an act of the Order, the conferring of the power to confirm is an act of jurisdiction which belongs to the Pope alone, having the plenitude of jurisdiction and therefore to extend the powers of simple priests.


I attached Billuart, Cursus Theologiae, Paris 1886, Tom. IX. Dis. I art. VII on this question

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Tue Oct 11, 2011 9:14 am
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New post Re: Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation
Thanks Julian, much appreciated. Texts are essential!

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Tue Oct 11, 2011 11:19 am
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New post Re: Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation
Julian wrote:
There is of course absolutely no question on whether a simple priest can validly confer Confirmation, as all theologians agree that he is the extraordinary minister of this Sacrament.


Yes. But that is not my point.

Julian wrote:
But I have major doubts in regards to the current situation of priests ordained by independent groups/Bishops without jurisdiction.


Again, yes, that may be a big problem which I have not thought about yet, but those are not whom I was speaking about: I was speaking about those old priests who were ordained before the present crisis.

Julian wrote:
I think several theologians hold, that the power of Confirmation rests in the bishop perfectly or completely, but in the priest incompletely.


Again, yes, or "latently".

Julian wrote:
While the confection of the Sacrament pertains to an act of the Order, the conferring of the power to confirm is an act of jurisdiction which belongs to the Pope alone, having the plenitude of jurisdiction and therefore to extend the powers of simple priests.


And yet again, yes. And that is ONE of my points: I submit that Pius XII extended that jurisdiction to simple priests by a direct act. As to whether or not that jurisdiction extends to those priests ordained by the traditional Bishops remains to be seen.

Julian wrote:
I attached Billuart, Cursus Theologiae, Paris 1886, Tom. IX. Dis. I art. VII on this question


Your attachments, while undoubtedly quite adequate proofs for your contentions listed above, since they are in Latin, and most of us here are NOT Latin scholars by any means, are not as helpful as they could be. Nonetheless, I thank you for them.

To make my beginning comments as clear as possible: I agree with everything you have said above, and with all the points you have attempted to make therein. However, what I want to attempt to make clear here is that Pius XII (due, I suspect, to some working of the Holy Ghost) prepared for our present situation wherein we have very few real bishops by giving to simple priests the jurisdiction required to confer the Sacrament of Confirmation, and he did this by a direct act of his Papal powers.

John, in his posting, hints that it is time for me to provide documentation in support of my contention. (I am not insensitive, John. :lol: ) Very well. I will begin by attempting to attach this first.

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Kenneth G. Gordon


Tue Oct 11, 2011 5:13 pm
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New post Re: Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation
Well...it doesn't appear that my attempt to attach a PDF has worked. Let me work on this and try again in a bit.

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Kenneth G. Gordon


Tue Oct 11, 2011 5:17 pm
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New post Re: Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation
Well, my files are too big: the system does not allow files larger than 256 KB, and mine are much larger than that. Therefore, I will upload them to my website and will post a link to them here.

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Kenneth G. Gordon


Tue Oct 11, 2011 5:26 pm
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New post Re: Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation
Although I have not yet been able to format the documentation mentioned in my previous posts on this subject to be suitable for presentation here, nor those mentioned in this exchange which I am going to post below, I will do so as soon as I possibly can.

This exchange was between myself [KG], a certain lay person whom I know well [LAYMAN], and a certain well-known layman whom some consider an expert on these sorts of matters. I have kept all but myself as anonymous as I possibly can. This question was first presented to me by the lay person mentioned above who was having particular difficulties with a member of their acquaintance and a certain old priest who was routinely confirming when asked to do so. I have indicated the priest in question by Fr. [XXXXX]. I hope what I have presented below is clear. If anyone is confused, please tell me and I will attempt to clarify.

"[KG] COMMENTING ON [XXXXXX]’S LETTER TO [LAYMAN] IN REGARDS TO CONFIRMATION

[LAYMAN]
“CONFIRMATION
Father XXXXX Confirmed-where in Canon Law/ Commentaries/ Canon Law Digest
does he get the authority?”

[KG]From several places: [XXXXXX] pretty well covered that.

From my reading, BASIC Canon Law (the 1917 version) makes a limited allowance for this. Then, the commentaries of Woywood (especially), Bouscaren and Ellis, and Abbo and Hannan, all make some mention of this faculty. Bouscaren was noted for being quite strict in interpretation. In fact, perhaps, in some cases, a bit too strict. Woywood is much more "kindly" in this regard, but still very accurate. He gives references to articles in other commentaries, and in the Canon Law Digest in support of his thinking. Abbo and Hannan are somewhere between those two, although I HAVE discovered at least one glaring error in a footnote in their commentary on "Confirmation by priests" in which they say, flatly, that no bishop can give a priest faculties to confirm, but this is DIRECTLY contradicted by at least one decree of the Holy See. Furthermore, not one of the other commentaries say this. In fact, the others contradict that statement.

The Canon Law digest was begun by Bouscaren, assisted by several others over the years, so his interpretations are, again, fairly strict, but even his interpretations become more gentle as the years go by.

I have not yet had a chance to read Augustin's commentary on Canon Law, but will as soon as I can.

The conclusion on my part, both from my reading, and from what [XXXXXX] says, is that Priests, in the present situation, fulfill at least the most important, if not ALL, of the requirements demanded by the Holy See (which does NOT include VCII and afterwards) when authorizing priests to confirm in certain situations.

From my reading of the Canon Law digest, and the commentaries by the legitimate Canon Law experts, it is quite clear to me that Pius XII was continuing to make the laws with regard to Confirmation, more and more open. I feel that he could see the handwriting on the wall, and was trying, as best he could, to provide for the faithful in these awful times.

Again, in my carefully considered opinion, Fr. XXXXX's confirmations are both licit and valid according to both Canon Law and the decrees of the Holy See as printed in the Commentaries, and in the Canon Law digest.

[LAYMAN] My main concern: - are there hard facts that Father truly has authority to Confirm?

[KG] Yes.

[LAYMAN] and out of his diocese?

[KG]Yes.

[LAYMAN] If he did it without the authority, would this be a sacrilege?

[KG] No. Not in my opinion. In any case, your question has two parts: is it a
sacrilege for the priest, and is it a sacrilege for the recipient.

Again, in my opinion, the recipient would most certainly not be guilty of any sin whatever, as the only reason for requesting this Sacrament is to further one's or one's childrens’ spiritual welfare.

As to whether or not the PRIEST commits any sin, in my opinion, no, although that is ultimately, of course, up to God and the priest in question. He may have the intention, not to Confirm, but to falsify the Sacraments. In which case, HE alone would have committed a sin. In Fr. XXXXX's case, I think we can safely say that he has the right intention.

[XXXXXX] [The attachment should settle this.]

[KG] It certainly does for me.

[LAYMAN] When he confirmed, he went very quickly and did not make sure the sponsors hands were on the person. Some of the people being confirmed, the sponsor did not have their hand on their shoulder. Does this invalidate the sacrament if the sacrament was truly conferred?

[KG] No. Not in my opinion. There was certainly a fault on the part of the priest involved, but that does not invalidate the Sacrament. After all, as [XXXXXX] points out, Canon Law requires that there be a sponsor, "...if one can be had...." And if there is NO sponsor, no one can put his hand on the confirmand's shoulder, yet the confirmation is still regarded as valid.

Also, I believe that Canon Law forbids the minister to be the sponsor. And although I will have to re-read Canon Law on this subject, I believe it also seriously discourages priests from ever being sponsors at all, since there is a spiritual affinity that occurs as a result of being a sponsor,
whether of baptism or confirmation.

[LAYMAN] He did the confirmations very sloppily-it seemed. Does this invalidate it?

[XXXXXX] Again, I would seriously doubt that it would. I am certain that his intention was correct, and all the important parts of the rubric were adhered to.

[KG] One thing we absolutely MUST keep away from is any sort of scrupulosity in these matters. We don't have the full understanding of what is going through the priest's mind, nor even why the Popes decreed as they did. Father was undoubtedly nervous for one thing, given all the
controversy.

However, I will again insist on avoiding scrupulosity in these, or any other matters.

[XXXXXX][Not having been present, I can't really opine.]

There is no question that a priest can confirm. Only in the Latin rite are priests restricted by permissions or faculties. In much of Latin America children are confirmed immediately after Baptism, without a bishop in sight. And in ALL the Oriental (Uniate) Rites, priests confirm children, routinely, immediately after baptism. The Roman Church has ALWAYS accepted those Confirmations as valid. In fact, has never so much as questioned their validity. They are presumed to be valid in every case.

Requisites for Valid Sponsorship
Canon 795: In order that one may validly be sponsor, the following conditions are required:
1) The sponsor must have received Confirmation, have attained the use of reason, and have the intention of performing the office of sponsorship;
2) The sponsor may not be a member of an heretical or schismatic sect (?corrected? by 1983 Canon 874, §2),

[KG] In my opinion, this last reference to the 1983 Code doesn't count. No heretic nor schismatic can be a sponsor. This only makes sense.

[XXXXXX] nor be declared liable to any of the penalties spoken of in Canon 765, n. 2, by a
declaratory or condemnatory sentence;
3) The sponsor may not be the father or mother of, or married to the candidate;
4) The sponsor must have been designated by the candidate, or by his parents or guardians, or, in their default or refusal to appoint a sponsor, by the pastor;
5) The sponsor must physically touch the candidate in the very act of the Confirmation, this action being performed personally or by proxy. (omitted 1983)
[This Canon prescribes that a sponsor is required and I see no reason why not, unless no sponsor is available, e.g., deathbed, battle field, bombing; but lack of a valid sponsor seems not to invalidate the sacrament, or the Canons should have so stated.]

[KG] Absolutely agree!!!!!

[XXXXXX] Objection: A priest of no particular diocese says that he can confirm because given this faculty in his mission territory.
Reply: was he delegated this faculty before or after Vatican II? Does he still operate over some or all of this mission territory? In certain specific circumstances certain priests are granted the faculty to confirm, an extraordinary power not to be assumed under Canon 209.

The Sacred Congregation of the Sacraments (14 Sept 1946) issued a decree approved 20 Aug. by Pope Pius XII effective 1 Jan. 1947:
1. By general indult of the Holy See, the faculty to confer the sacrament of Confirmation as extraordinary ministers (canon 782, §2), only in the cases and under the conditions mentioned below, is given to the following priests and to them only:
(a) to pastors who have a territory of their own, exclusive therefore of personal and family pastors unless these also have their own proper, even though cumulative, territory;
(b) to the vicars mentioned in canon 471 and to vicar administrators;
(c) to priests to whom the full care of souls with all the rights and duties of pastors has been entrusted in an exclusive and stable manner in a definite territory with a determinate church.
2. The aforesaid ministers can validly and licitly confer Confirmation themselves personally, only upon the faithful who are staying in their territory, including the persons who are staying in places which have been withdrawn from parochial jurisdiction; including, therefore, seminaries, guest-houses, sanitaria and other institutions of every sort, and religious institutes however exempt (c 792); provided these faithful by reason of grave illness are in genuine danger of death from which it is foreseen that they will die.

[KG] My reading of the Canon Law digest, and Bouscaren's commentary on the earlier (1947) decree, gives me a slightly different perspective on this: first of all the Latin words "in articulo mortis" which were in the Canon Law previous to 1947 (at least) indicate to me what [XXXXXX] says above. That is, "danger of death...so..they will die".

"In articulo mortis" essentially means in English "in the act of dying". However (and Bouscaren, surprisingly, makes a big deal about this), those words, "in articulo mortis" were changed to "in periculo mortis" in the 1947 decree. In English this means "...in danger of death.", leaving OUT, or simply removing, the part about being "in the act of dying." And this is very important for us in our circumstances.

[XXXXXX] If these ministers overstep the limits of this mandate, they must fully realize that they act invalidly and confer no sacrament, and that moreover the provision of canon 2365 remains in full operation. (Canon 2365: A priest who, neither by law nor by concession of the Roman Pontiff, has the faculty to administer the Sacrament of Confirmation, and yet dares to administer this sacrament, shall be suspended. A priest who presumes to administer Confirmation beyond the limits of the faculty conceded to him, is automatically deprived of such faculty.) (Seven paragraphs of Woywod's commentary do not apply.

[KG] This last statement is pretty much correct: Woywood's commentary do not apply to this particular part of Canon Law.

[XXXXXX} But: right after this decree in Bouscaren's Canon Law Digest, Vol III, we find: "Discipline of the Code of Canon Law to be observed in Conferring Confirmation in Virtue of this Apostolic indult:

3. The chrism which is used in the administration of this sacrament, even by a simple priest, must be consecrated by a Bishop [nearly impossible to find]. Very true indeed, and of utmost importance, since without chrism blessed by a REAL bishop, the confirmation would be invalid.

[KG] Thus, if chrism was used that was blessed by a Novus Ordo non-bishop, the Confirmation would be invalid.

I will repeat here what I have said on this subject before: any man who was 1) ordained after 1969, and then 2) "consecrated" a bishop after 1969 is automatically not a valid bishop, and may, in fact, be nothing more than a layman. His ordination is questionable: his consecration is highly suspect, and, in my opinion completely invalid.

[XXXXXX] who is in communion with the [vacant] Holy See, on the last preceding Holy Thursday; ..... it is never allowed to administer Confirmation without chrism, or to receive the chrism from heretical or schismatic bishops.

[KG] Yes. Furthermore, even validly blessed chrism must not be more than two years old unless finding new chrism is impossible. Furthermore, Canon Law states that one may add pure Olive oil to Chrism, as long as the quantity of Olive Oil added is less than 1/2 of the remaining Chrism...and this may be done a second time if necessary, but no, apparently, a third time, although this is not specifically mentioned.

[XXXXXX] "The Sacred Congregation for the Propagation of the Faith obtained further concessions which it published 18 Dec. 1947: ..... Accordingly His Holiness granted to all local Ordinaries who depend on this Sacred Congregation ...., without prejudice to other indults ..... the power by Apostolic indult (can. 782, §2) to give to all priests who are subject to them and have the care of souls, the faculty to administer Sacred Confirmation validly to the faithful, whether adults or infants, ..... within the territorial boundaries of the mission and are in danger of death; ....."

[KG] Abbo and Hannan directly deny this. They are, quite simply and obviously, wrong.

[XXXXXX] The broadened concession is, therefore, in the number of priests, not in the conditions and limitations. A Rescript of the Sacred Congregation of the Sacraments (N. 5869/48,18 Nov. 1948) granted faculties to regularly assigned chaplains at maternity hospitals and orphanages to confirm children in danger of death, when a bishop is unavailable. The same faculty was granted missionaries of emigrants in favor of their subjects on the point of death.

[KG] This is what I meant above when I said that it looked to me as though PPXII was trying as best he could to provide for the faithful in this matter.

[XXXXXX] At this point let us drag in an eight-page attachment.
(Canon_2261[1].pdf) When we consider that here we are authorized to require the sacraments from an excommunicated priest,

[KG] Yes, but this does not give us the right to demand the sacraments from ANY excommunicated priest at ANY time, but only in an extreme emergency.

[XXXXXX] and that from our request he draws all the jurisdiction required,

[KG] Yes.

[XXXXXX] how could we be forbidden or unauthorized to make the same request from a priest in good standing?

[KG] Again, yes, and well-said.

[XXXXXX] And how will his reply grant us less than that of the excommunicated priest?

[KG] Plainly, it cannot.

[XXXXXX] Most restrictions on priests are for the protection of their bishops, who, being responsible for their respective territories and all religious activity therein, must be able to control this activity.

[KG] Again, yes.

[XXXXXX] In ordinary times this worked for the benefit of all. Each bishop's jurisdiction was upheld in his own diocese. No priest could invade a diocese and function without faculties from the local bishop, whom the law upheld. But when the See is vacant, by reason of the ?bishop?s? heresy and/or invalid ?consecration,? the law cannot protect his non-existent ?jurisdiction?; he has no territory to invade.

[KG] IMHO, Absolutely correct.

[XXXXXX] The priest's own jurisdiction grows to include all vacancies.

[KG] I would not say "all": I would say that it would most likely include any jurisdiction necessary to provide for the salvation of souls.

[XXXXXX] There is no authority in Rome or a Bishops' Conference that can legitimately fill the vacant See or limit the ministry of a genuine priest.

[KG] If he means, "...in the present apostate Rome..." again, I would absolutely agree.

[KG] To recapitulate both [XXXXXX] and my thoughts here:

1) It is clear that Fr. XXXXX does have the authority, given by the Pope, to validly and licitly confirm, especially in these circumstances. Proof is in Canon Law Digest # 3 and # 4.

2) Any essentially superficial errors he makes in the administration of Confirmation do not invalidate the Sacrament. Proof for this comes directly from the 1917 Code of Canon Law itself. (I am certain that if this present controversy were laid to rest, he could easily be guided to NOT make any mistakes in this ceremony. But for this to occur, it is almost imperative that you lay-people know exactly what should be done.)

3) It must be explained to Fr. XXXXX, one way or another, and gently at that, that you will not accept the validity of confirmations done using chrism provided by a Novus Ordo non-bishop. (To me, this is going to be a quite serious problem, as there are so few real bishops easily available now.)

If there is anything you would like to have explained in more clear language please e-mail me at your convenience. I will do my best.

If you would like copies of the decrees that both [XXXXXX] and I have mentioned above or in past e-mails, I can provide those, but since such a job, in order to be truly complete, would require someone to go through some 6000 pages of books and documents, it will take some time.

Ken Gordon"

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Kenneth G. Gordon


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New post Re: Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation
Here is the first document which started me on this quest:
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Attachment:
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Confirm-5_Rit.jpg [ 234.79 KiB | Viewed 36575 times ]

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Kenneth G. Gordon


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New post Re: Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation
Another bit of supporting documentation:

"§ .6 The Receipt of Confirmation

2. The Extraordinary Minister

The extraordinary minister of Confirmation is a priest on whom this full power is conferred by the common law or by a special apostolic indult. (Sent. certa.) CIC 782, Par. 2. Cf. D 697, 573.

By an indult of the Apostolic See special power was given, with effect from 1st January, 1947: a) To Parish Priests within their own territory; b) To permanent Vicars (can. 471) and to the administrator of a vacant parish (can 472); c) To priests to whom, in a definite territory with a definite church, the full spiritual care with all parochial rights and duties has been exclusively and permanently transferred. These are empowered personally to confer the Sacrament of Confirmation on those of the faithful who live in their territory if, a) these, in consequence of serious illness, are in actual danger of death, so that their death is to be reckoned with, and b) the Diocesan Bishop is not available or is lawfully prevented from being present, and another bishop who could represent the Diocesan Bishop is not to be had (emergency Confirmation). If anybody other than those named in the Indult are confirmed there results an invalidation of the Sacrament and the loss of the power to confirm (can. 2365). Decretum S. Congregationis de Disciplina Sacramentorum “Spiritus Sancti munera” of 14. 9. 1946 (AAS 38, 1946, 349 et seq.). Special directions were given for mission fields (AAS 40, 1948, 41).
Pope St. Gregory the Great granted the administration of Confirmation to priests in Sardinia, on the condition that a bishop was not available (Ep. N 26). In numerous cases later Popes empowered simple priests to administer Confirmation.
In the Eastern Church the administration of Confirmation by simple priests has gradually become the general practice since the 4th century. The Apostolic Constitutions (end of the 4th century) grant the power to impose hands in Confirmation (χετροθ ε σία) not merely to bishops but also to presbyters (VIII 28, 3). This development was strongly promoted by the distinction made between the completion and the administration of the Sacrament on the analogy of the Holy Eucharist, that is, between the consecration of the myron reserved to the bishop, and the anointing with the consecrated myron performed by the priest. (Cf. St. Cyril of Jerusalem, Cat. myst. 3, 3.) The validity of the Greek Confirmation celebrated by priests, which has always been recognised by the Catholic Church is explained by a tacit privilege of the Apostolic See (thus Pope Benedict XIV. De synode dioec. VII 9, 3 ; cf. D 697; per Apostolicae Sedis dispensationem).
The extraordinary power to confirm possessed by simple priests is to be regarded as deriving from the papal jurisdictive power, not as a delegated extra¬sacramental consecration-power, but as a constituent part of the power of consecration received by the priest in Holy Order. This power of consecration, however, is limited, and can be used only in virtue of the papal power of the Keys."

However, at the moment, I cannot remember from which book I copied this... :oops:

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New post Re: Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation
And here is one from one of Ludwig Ott's books:

"From “Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma” by Ludwig Ott, 4th edition, May 1960, Edited in English by James Canon Bastible, D.D.

Page 369

Chaper 5. The Minister of Confirmation.

Section 2. The Extraordinary Minister

“The extraordinary minister of Confirmation is a priest on whom this full power is conferred by the common law, or by a special apostolic indult. (Sent. Certa)
CIC 782, Par. 2. Cf. D 697, 573.

By an indult of the Apostolic See special power was given, with effect from 1st January, 1947: a) To Parish Priests within their own territory; b) To permanent Vicars (can. 471) and to the administrator of a vacant parish (can. 472); c) To priests to whom, in a definite territory with a definite church, the full spiritual care with all parochial rights and duties has been exclusively and permanently transferred. These are empowered personally to confer the Sacrament of Confirmation on those of the faithful who live in their territory if, a) these, in consequence of serious illness, are in actual danger of death, so that their death is to be reckoned with, and b) the Diocesan Bishop is not available, or is lawfully prevented from being present, and another bishop who could represent the Diocesan Bishop is not to be had (emergency Confirmation). If anybody other than those named in the Indult are confirmed there results an invalidation of the Sacrament and the loss of the power to confirm (can. 2365). Decretum S. Congregationis de Disciplina Sacramentorum “Spiritus Sancti munera” of 14. 9. 1946 (AAS 38, 1946, 349 et seq.). Special directions were given for mission fields (AAS 40, 1948, 41)."

This one pretty much repeats the one I posted above from a different source.

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New post Re: Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation
The following consists of 11 pages, all in Latin. I will attempt to post these separately. Here is the opening page:
Attachment:
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New post Re: Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation
Here is page 2. I am making an MS-Word file out of these, and simply copy-and-pasting them here. Therefore, they will lose all their formatting. I have tried to make .JPGs out of these, but all come out larger than the 256 KB permitted to be uploaded by the forum software.

"Sacra Congregatio Consistorialis

die 25 Augusti. - Titulari episcopali Ecclesiae Lampsacenae, R. D. Aurelium Marena, Antistitem Urbanum et Canonicurn Capituli Metropolitani Neapolitani, quem deputavit Auxiliarem Ei ac Revmi D. Alexii S. R. E. Cardinalis Ascalesi, Archiepiscopi Neapolitani.
die 1 Septembris. - Cathedralibus Ecclesiis Montis Alti et Ripanae, in personam. unitis, Exc. P. D. Petrum Ossola, hactenus Episcopum titularem Oxomitanum.
die d Septembris. - Titulari episcopali Ecclesiae Bisicensi R. I). Franciscum Prada Carrera, quem constituit Praelatum Praelaturae Nullius Sancti Ioseph de Alto Tocantins
die 8 Septembris. - Metropolitanis Ecclesiis Acheruntinae et Materanensi, invicem perpetuo unitis, R. D. Vincentium Cavalla, Canonicum theologum Capituli cathedralis Astensis.
die 15 Septembris. - Metropolitanae Ecclesiae Compsanae et Cathedralibus Ecclesiis de Lombardis et Bisaciensi aeque principaliter unitis Exc. P. D. Christophorum Dominicum Carullo, Episcopum Laquedoniensem, eas coniungens in personam dioecesi Laquedoniensi.
die 50 Septembris. - Archiepiscopali titulari Ecclesiae Nicaenae R. P. Martinum Stanislaum Gillet, antea Magistrum Generalem Ordinis Fratrum Praedicatorum.
die 1 0ctobris. - Archiepiscopali titulari Ecclesiae Madytensi Exc. P. D. Stephanum Corbini, hactenus Episcopum Fulginatensem.
SACRA CONGREGATIO
DE DISCIPLINA SACRAMENTORUM

I
DECRETUM

DE CONFIRMATIONE ADMINISTRANDA IIS, QUI EX GRAVI MORBO IN MORTIS PERICULO SUNT CONSTITUTI.

Spiritus Sancti munera Sacramento Confirmationis conferri catholica doctrina proclamat. Hinc impensa Ecclesiae cura ut pueri, aquis baptismi abluti, tali reficiantur Sacramento, quo superni Paraclyti charismata adipiscantur ad robur susceptae baptismo fidei adiiciendum, ut
25 - ACTA, vol. X111, n. 11. - 3-10-046.

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Kenneth G. Gordon


Wed Oct 12, 2011 3:52 am
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New post Re: Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation
Ken Gordon wrote:
a) To Parish Priests within their own territory; b) To permanent Vicars (can. 471) and to the administrator of a vacant parish (can. 472); c) To priests to whom, in a definite territory with a definite church, the full spiritual care with all parochial rights and duties has been exclusively and permanently transferred. These are empowered personally to confer the Sacrament of Confirmation on those of the faithful who live in their territory ...


Dear Ken,

This is explicitly limited to those who possess jurisdiction, habitual or delegated. It's also limited to the faithful who live in their territory.

No traditional priest you're likely to come across would qualify, and the chances of him living just down the road from you (i.e. he's your parish priest) would seem infinitesimally remote!

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Fri Oct 14, 2011 12:20 pm
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New post Re: Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation
Yes, John, but there is more coming.

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Kenneth G. Gordon


Tue Oct 18, 2011 12:38 am
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New post Re: Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation
To clarify: I have so far posted only two pages of the 11 from the Acta which contain the original (preliminary) document from the Holy See concerning this subject.

This is only the preliminary discussion.

What I hope to post here in the coming months are the subsequent discussions on this document, primarily from the Canon Law Digest, followed by further pronouncements from the Holy See which further liberalize this faculty, again followed by further discussion, mostly, but not all, from the Canon Law Digest.

In the interests of safety, I will not take such discussion, even from the Canon Law Digest, dated after 1958.

I hope the final result will prove my contention that "simple" priests now have the faculty, provided to them by a particular permission of the Holy See (which, by the way, is completely in line with the 1917 Code) to confirm anyone necessary, and the only remaining criteria is that there be no bishop reasonably available.

However, even if what I contend is true, valid confirmation still requires chrism blessed by a valid (real) bishop, and this is almost as difficult to obtain as a real bishop.

So, although (if what I contend is true) the Sacrament of Confirmation is a bit easier to obtain for ones' children due to the minister being more easily available, at least for a while, it will still not be simple.

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Kenneth G. Gordon


Wed Oct 26, 2011 6:00 am
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New post Re: Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation
John Lane wrote:
Ken Gordon wrote:
a) To Parish Priests within their own territory; b) To permanent Vicars (can. 471) and to the administrator of a vacant parish (can. 472); c) To priests to whom, in a definite territory with a definite church, the full spiritual care with all parochial rights and duties has been exclusively and permanently transferred. These are empowered personally to confer the Sacrament of Confirmation on those of the faithful who live in their territory ...


Dear Ken,

This is explicitly limited to those who possess jurisdiction, habitual or delegated. It's also limited to the faithful who live in their territory.

No traditional priest you're likely to come across would qualify, and the chances of him living just down the road from you (i.e. he's your parish priest) would seem infinitesimally remote!


I was about to start a new topic when I came across with this.

It seems from the document of Pius XII that traditional priests don´t fit in this category:

Quote:
a) To Parish Priests within their own territory; b) To permanent Vicars (can. 471) and to the administrator of a vacant parish (can. 472); c) To priests to whom, in a definite territory with a definite church, the full spiritual care with all parochial rights and duties has been exclusively and permanently transferred. These are empowered personally to confer the Sacrament of Confirmation on those of the faithful who live in their territory


In spite of this I`ve heard traditional priests saying that they are allowed to confirm under certain circumstances (in fact there have been cases). Does anyone knows how they support those confirmations?

Thanks in advance!

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Leon Bloy


Thu Jan 31, 2013 12:49 am
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New post Re: Whether "simple" Priests can validly confer Confirmation
Cristian Jacobo wrote:
I was about to start a new topic when I came across with this.

It seems from the document of Pius XII that traditional priests don´t fit in this category:

I would not imply that ALL traditional priests don't fit this category: in fact, some do.

Cristian Jacobo wrote:
In spite of this I've heard traditional priests saying that they are allowed to confirm under certain circumstances (in fact there have been cases). Does anyone knows how they support those confirmations?

I know in at least three specific cases that the priests involved have either been given specific faculties by a real Bishop to confirm and this faculty has never been taken away, or that they had been given faculties to confirm in virtue of their membership in a special missionary society for use in the mission field.

All of these faculties and the necessary permissions from the legitimate Holy See were obtained AFTER the above-mentioned document was published.

Some of these necessary faculties and permissions were, in fact, published by the Holy See only very shortly before the death of Pius XII.

I must apologize for NOT continuing to publish what information I have on this subject here on the forum. However, circumstances have simply prevented it. I will attempt to rectify that as soon as possible.

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Kenneth G. Gordon


Fri Feb 01, 2013 6:51 pm
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