Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
The following Frequently Asked Questions and Answers are from questions submitted to the Archdiocese of Denver Office of Liturgy
Q: What is the Archbishop's stand on flags IN the sanctuary? I checked USCCB and they don't have a definite answer. They say it is up to the local Bishop or the parish priest.
A: Our citizenship is in heaven. So, national associations and flags are not to be placed in the sanctuary in such a place as they are prominent. To the far corners of the sanctuary, hanging in the vestibule or just outside the sanctuary, would be in keeping with the liturgical books and diocesan preferences.
Q: Is there an "approved list" of music for weddings?
A: Each parish has its own policies regarding what is, and what is not appropriate. The two major pieces that are usually questioned are Bridal Chorus by Wagner and the Bridal March by Mendelssohn. These are not acceptable as they are both secular pieces that were never meant to be for the Church or used in the liturgy.
The three judgments for selecting music for any liturgy are:
1. Liturgical - Is it suitable for Liturgical use?
2. Theological - Is it based on sacred text or a religious text?
3. Pastoral - Does it help lead the assembly in their active participation of the Sacred Liturgy?
Q: What is the Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion mandation process?
A: Perhaps you are thinking about helping in your parish as an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion (EMHC). How does one go about that? First, meet the parish coordinator of the EMHCs. It could be the pastor, deacon or the parish liturgist. The requirement to be one is simple: fully initiated Catholic (Baptized, received First Holy Communion and Confirmation) in a regular marriage situation (i.e. marriage has been in the Church; if married before, has had their marriage annulled through the tribunal) living a moral life and is in good standing with the Church (believe and profess all that the Church teaches). Next is the training. Usually, it may be for a few hours. After the training, your pastor submits your name along with those of other parishioners for approval as EMHC to the Archbishop. The Archbishop will send back certificates to the pastor mandating those names that were submitted for the remainder of the three year period ending the First Sunday of Advent 2015. No matter when you were mandated, the expiration date is the 1st Sunday of Advent, 2015. All EMHC have to be mandated every three years. We currently have over 10,000 EMHCs in the Archdiocese of Denver.
Q: Who can be Godparents?
A: This is a question the Office of Liturgy answers regularly. In the Pastoral Handbook of the Archdiocese of Denver, only a fully initiated Catholic (i.e. a Catholic who has been Baptized, received First Holy Communion and Confirmation) and is in a regular marriage situation (i.e. marriage has been in the Church; if married before, has had their marriage annulled through the tribunal) can be Godparents. Those who don’t meet the requirements above, can be Christian Witnesses to the Baptism, but parents must choose a person who meets the above requirements to be a Godparent. Why, you might ask? It is because the child or adult who is going to be baptized needs a strong Catholic to help them understand what it means to profess being a Catholic. Perhaps, there are parents who are not very strong in their practice of the Catholic faith, but the Godparent is. The Godparent can be the one to ensure that the newly baptized are helped along their journey of life to understand and believe in the one, true God and profess being a part of his one, true Church.
Q: What is the lector mandation process – how to become a lector?
A: Currently, there is no mandation process similar to the one for Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion. However, requirements are the same: fully initiated Catholic (Baptized, received First Holy Communion and Confirmation) in a regular marriage situation (i.e. marriage has been in the Church; if married before, has had their marriage annulled through the tribunal) living a moral life and is in good standing with the Church (believe and profess all that the Church teaches). Again, seek out the lector coordinator to discuss training and scheduling at your parish.