Q. I had been away from the Catholic Church for a very long time, but I recently returned and I have a question. I was married in the Catholic Church and got a divorce, but I did not get a church annulment. Later, I married a different man (not a Catholic) and divorced him as […]
Q. My mother passed away some time ago, and I wonder whether she is now in “God’s eternal embrace.” How can I be sure? She was a good mother and she dearly loved the church, but we have been taught that everyone has some imperfections and, upon death, must be sent to purgatory before they […]
Q: I have been a Catholic since birth (over 50 years), but I am still learning things about my religion. Recently we were at a wedding in another city, and the priest who performed the ceremony told us that he has been a priest for 10 years but has been married for 30 years. Did […]
Fr. Doyle offers advice on Communion and persons with disabilities as well as the preaching frequency of deacons.
Worship is a pastor’s highest responsibility, and the experience of worship must always be prayerful, not distracting or distressing.
Q. Is it true that men born out of wedlock cannot enter the priesthood? (Philadelphia) A. No, that is not true. But your question does reflect a lengthy period in the church’s history when illegitimacy was ruled a barrier. The Council of Poitiers, under Pope Paschal II, determined in the late 11th century that being […]
Should a baby born in danger of dying be baptized by a nurse and why do we genuflect using the right knee in church.
Q. Would you please print a prayer of protection against tornadoes? Tornado warnings get my full attention. Recently, six tornadoes touched down here in Middle Tennessee on the same day. The television news had warned that the last of the six was headed to the next road over from ours. That is too close for […]
Q. When Jesus was dying on the cross, according to the Gospel, he cried out, “My God, why have you abandoned me?” Why was he saying this? Did he really feel that his Father had abandoned him? (Coxs Creek, Kentucky) A. Half a century ago, when I first began to think about the meaning of […]
Q. I have been wondering about the origin of the Hail Mary prayer. I realize that the first part is from the Scriptures, when Mary is greeted by her cousin Elizabeth, but when was the complete prayer introduced in the church and who were its authors? (Northern New Jersey) A. As to the first part […]
Q. I enjoy reading your column in our archdiocesan newspaper, The Criterion, and I am hoping that you can help with something I have always wondered about: Why, at the end of the “Glory be to the Father,” do we say “world without end”? (Indianapolis) A. Your question serves as a good reminder of how […]