Specifically in conjunction with the here and there heard “Dispensation” of Priests from the obligations appended to their Clerical State and the “Dismissal” of Priests from the Clerical State, the following pointers should be well noted for sake of clarify:
The difference between the above said Cases of “Dispensation” and “Dismissal” of Priest, primarily consists in the following factors: A “Dispensation” is a favor given for right reasons upon formal request or petition of the Priest concerned. On the other hand, a “Dismissal” is a penalty for just causes, imposed upon a Priest who adamantly refused to seek a Dispensation for whatever silly, peculiar or strange reason he might have. Given their inherent gravity, the Supreme Pontiff is the ultimate Judge in both “Dispensation” and “Dismissal” Cases.
Finally, the following pointers could prove useful to better understand the nature of the Church, the import of clerical discipline and the updated response of the Vatican towards Priests living un-priestly lives:
1.The Church is certainly and definitely not the Churchmen the Church is sanctified and sanctifying as founded and headed by Christ, the Second Person of the Most Blessed Trinity who become man. Hence, while certain Churchmen prove to be vicious and scandalous, they are categorically and specifically not the Church.
2.Clerical discipline means much more than the fulfillment of obligations in the sense that these are premised not simply the ten Commandments but also based on Church Magisterium and the pursuant provisions of universal Church Law concretely meant for the observance of the Clergy. The Church is looked upon as a Mother for her attentive concerned and caring disposition towards humanity in general, the Clergy included. But she is also a disciplinarian for the good of all those concerned.
3.Quite recently, the Vatican issued an official document dated 18 April 2009 and bearing Docket No. 2009/9566, the central content and main spirit of which is to make the “Dismissal” of Priest from the Clerical State much easier, and which is therefore basically intended to clear the ranks of the Clergy from undesirable Priests the world over. Concretely in conjunction with the Church in the Philippines, not only individual Bishops process the “Dispensation” and “Dismissal” of their own undesirable Clerics, but the CBCP itself has an Office specially established for the same purpose. The Cases all over the Country amount to hundreds to date. Would that their numbers do not increase.
11 FEBRUARY 2011